April 22, 2013, 8:00 am
Do you ever promise yourself that you’ll do something, only to let it slide?
Many of us have good intentions that we don’t act upon.
One way to clarify your commitments and to take action towards your important goals is to involve other people.
Find an Accountability Partner or Community
A good accountability partner should be able to ask you clarifying questions, offer you encouragement and support, and hold you to your commitments. Depending on your personality type and the kinds of goals you want to work towards, you may want a partner who is primarily supportive or one who will be more firm with you if you start to back away from your commitments.
Several online communities exist to help motivate and track personal goals. 43 Things has been active for several years and allows you to see the goals that others have set and comment on them to provide support and advice….
June 6, 2011, 8:00 am
Accountability is one of the real pain points in meetings, perhaps especially in academic meetings, where it’s easy for assigning tasks or follow-up to get lost in the fog of the semester, or for attendees to confuse having explored an issue at length with having done something about it. And meetings don’t have to be terribly large to cause this problem–a phone call, or an impromptu encounter with a colleague, might easily count as a meeting that necessitates some follow-up.
The minutes of meetings often don’t help, either, as they dutifully record votes, and sometimes discussions, but frequently don’t indicate what the next steps are to accomplish a committee or department’s next set of tasks.
As Merlin Mann has argued, a sure-fire way to improve meetings is for meeting leaders (committee chairs, etc.) to insist on “transitive followup.” Tasks should be recorded in the…