My last two years of college was group work. Group assignments, group research, group evaluations. I was not a fan! My groups didn’t always work well together and some people were not responsible. Often times I was pulling more weight than my team. I felt it was easier to account for my grade alone.

Then I got my first job out of college and into the “real world” and that changed my thought process. Today, my entire career is based on teamwork. I love it! Truth is, working as part of a team is just as much about finding a way to make it work for you individually as it is about contributing to the overall team and its success. It boils down to accountability, personal responsibility and self-discipline.

Several years ago, one of my mentors told me one of the best ways to increase self-discipline and accountability in my career was to keep finding different ways to motivate myself and hold myself accountable.

So, with the help of colleagues and mentors, I’ve created this list of questions to ask yourself to help determine if you are an accountable person.

Do you set micro-goals? (I like to think of micro-goals as a single action that, when accomplished, serves as a building block to a much larger goal.)

Do you make to-do lists?

Do you reward yourself when you do a job well?

Do you do one task at a time?

Do you emphasize your strengths, work to improve your weaknesses?

Do you seek feedback?

Are you responsible whether the results are good or bad?

Do you tell the truth? (No one is perfect, but trying to cover up a mistake only makes it worse.)

According to my mentor, if you answered “yes” to most of these questions, you are more than likely accountable. You don’t blame others, make excuses and procrastinate. You don’t just do the minimum, you exceed expectations. You get things done. You like checklists and enjoy evaluating results. Unaccountable people are quick to complain and slow to act.

How do you stay accountable in your job, in life? Share below. Join the conversation. does not condone or review every comment. Read more in our Commenter Policy Agreement

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