Institute a vow of personal responsibility

August 17, 2012 at 10:03 am 1 comment

The following is a contributed article by author Marlene Chism. Read it to learn how to foster personal accountability in the workplace.

Managing your business would be a breeze if you could eliminate the time wasters and energy drains like office gossip, power struggles, tattling and other relationship challenges. Think about how smoothly your department, operation or company would run if each person knew how to communicate effectively, handle disappointment and stress—without resorting to blame, criticism or finger pointing. Personal growth and empowerment would replace stress and negativity, and customers would notice the increase in professionalism, attention to detail and service.

This vision is possible when you embrace the principle of personal responsibility in your hiring and in your management philosophy.

If you want to take your business to new levels, now is the perfect time to institute The Vow of Personal Responsibility. Share the vow with employees and ask them to sign it. At the beginning of the year, make copies and distribute the vow and read together at a staff meeting. (Download a free copy of the vow by clicking on the link!)

Invite discussion about how difficult it can be to live responsibly, and ask for employees to talk about areas where they could improve personally and professionally. Encourage team leaders to discuss their own challenges, and share some of your own as an HR professional. The exercise will create a sense of camaraderie, as each person realistically reflects on areas of personal growth.

Then invite everyone to sign and date The Vow of Personal Responsibility. At least monthly, encourage managers to review the document to remind people that they are accountable for their work and actions. Each time you hold one another accountable, you chip away at the victim mentality and will foster a culture of responsible co-creators who contribute value to your business.

Marlene ChismMarlene Chism is a professional speaker, trainer and the author of  Stop Workplace Drama (Wiley 2011). For more information visit and Marlene Chism combines universal principles with sound business practices to bridge the inner and outer game of success. Marlene has a master’s degree in HR development from Webster University. She is also the author of  Success is a Given: Reading the Signs While Reinventing Your Life. Marlene invites you to learn more about her new book and how her Stop Your Drama Methodology, eight principles to help leaders gain clarity and reduce workplace drama, can help your organization at Join the Stop Your Drama book club and get resources at


Entry filed under: Company Culture, Employee retention. Tags: , , , , .

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