One of the best things I’ve ever done to move my company forward was to create an Accountability Group.
When you’re a business owner of a small company, it can be easy to lose yourself in a “bubble”. Either you’re surrounded by “yes” people or you have your head down so long you’re not looking up to see where you can bring your company next.
For me, having an accountability group helps me get out of my “bubble”, but they also make sure that I’m always moving forward, especially when I hit one of those inevitable bumps in the entrepreneurial road.
For example, I’ve recently started a membership group for small business owners that are feeling like they’re missing the boat on the best marketing strategies to move them forward. It was a new direction for me, so I needed to lean hard on my accountability group to keep me moving forward.
When I launched my last course, I made sure that my accountability group knew my plans – and they held me to it.
Benefits of an Accountability Group
But accountability groups aren’t just good to move a project forward. They’re also there to help you get through to the other side of a challenge.
For example, one of the members of my group recently faced some business challenges that started him questioning whether he should even continue working as an entrepreneur and get back to working for “the man”. He was running into some pretty dark days.
As a group we let him wallow for a day or two, but then we joined forces and worked to get him through his challenges. And because our group consists of a few people (4 total) our different personalities helped him in different ways.
Some “gently” helped him see the positive – and others used “tough love” and told him to get off his butt and stop feeling sorry for himself and keep moving forward.
After a time – he got through to the other side and started being productive again through the power of the group.
If you’re ready to start your own accountability group, here are some Best Practices so that you can get the most out of it.
Best practices when creating your accountability group
- Meet often – my accountability group meets every day for 15 minutes. We’re strict on the time allotted because meeting every day is a lot. BUT… it keeps us all on track when we check in every day.
- Stick to the schedule – if you plan to meet every day, keep to the schedule. If it’s once a week, don’t miss. You should never be “too busy” to meet. If you have to miss a meeting, report into the group beforehand with your accomplishments since the last meeting.
- Keep it short and to the point – someone should be the moderator that makes sure the group sticks to the 15-minute timeframe. Start a timer (you can look up one online) and then when the time is done, it’s done. It may be tough to keep on track at the start, but you’ll quickly learn to get to the point so everyone gets their time.
- Keep it small – ideally your accountability group shouldn’t be more than 5 people. Larger than that and you will lose the power of the group coming together often. It may even be hard for 5 people to keep to the same schedule – but pick a time that works for the majority and stick to it. Also, a large group makes it difficult to meet frequently and complete the check-in each time in a short amount of time.
- Diversify – if you can, try to have people in your group that are working on different business, working on different challenges or are in different stages of their business. This diversity of thought will help you ALL learn.
So if you struggle in your company at times (and honestly, what entrepreneur doesn’t struggle?) then try creating an accountability group. Remember, this is different from a network group, mastermind or leads group. Your accountability group is there to keep you moving forward in your company – whether you’re launching new products, hitting challenges or you just need help accomplishing some of the mundane tasks that you’ve been avoiding but are necessary for the success of your business.