Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Capitalizing on Capabilities: Accountability has the most transferability in the Capability Audit

It must seem to the readers of my blog posts that I am stuck on the leadership qualities.  I reviewed the Capitalizing on Capabilities.  Most notably the process in the article of doing the audit, and how that can make the performance of the organization.  The example of the IHG Group was interesting to me, because I recently staid in one of their hotels.  All of this article is hinges on accountability, although it only highlights the employees performance.  Every situation whether at work, or in our everyday lives hinges on whether we are accountable or not.  Until we drill that into the heads of our employees, partners, friends, and family we will not be able to achieve any kind of social utility or progress.  

If I were a leading executive of a non-profit or for-profit business and was going through this Capability Audit it would be important to keep accountability in mind.  Even though we would only be focusing on three points, accountability needs to be central in our thought process. 

As point of example lets take three of the listed qualities in the audit: Collaboration, Customer Connectivity, and Efficiency.  As a senior staffer at a public utility, the word accountability is the foremost on my mind.  Not only because I look work in the public sector, but because I have the realization that I have to own my actions and my lack of actions.

If we were going through an audit of these three categories in a public water utility.  I would use the definition of Collaboration as provided in the article: how well to we work together to gain efficiency and leverage.  It would be incumbent of me as a senior staffer to make sure that the right team members are made aware of a situation that deals with both operations and government relations.  Not doing so would not give use leverage as an organization, and would not promote efficiency.

The second would be Customer Connectivity: do we establish relationships with customers that are enduring and helps us build as an organization.  An example comes to mind of a developer not being able to pass a flow test.  The flow test comprises of dealing with the Fire Bureau, The Water Company, City Planning, among others.  It is one of the catch 22 times in development.  We have among us a developer that has developed multiple times, but is having trouble with this cross agency dealing.  To be a leader, and make him want to come back we must be accountable for what we are responsible.  Also, to be a leader we must be accountable for what we are not responsible, to show that we are willing to solve complex issues.  This will allow this customer to attack other customers, and come back to our organization in the near future.

Finally, would be Efficiency:  do we make sure to continually looking over people, process, and projects to make sure we are not leaving anything on the table.  At our public utility, we are constantly looking at these subjects to make sure we have the right people in the right place at the right time.  It saves time power, and money.  Moreover, if we do not look at these we as senior level executives are not being accountable.

The accountability factor is something we cannot escape, and should not.  We have the responsibility to ourselves and our team to remind ourselves daily.  My example of staying in the IHG Group hotel made me think about how they connected to me, how they collaborated, and how they were efficient.  They did all well, and mostly because they were accountable to their team and themselves.  There were times when political leaders said, "the buck stops here!"  Harry S. Truman was the one that coined the phrase, but too many leaders exhibit the behavior that the first picture does.  Until we push this on ourselves, and the members of our team the audit will not be successful.          

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