Being Responsible and Accountable, as well as Hold Others To the Same Levels

accountability No more finger-pointing. Time for everyone to honestly look at themselves on a day-to-day basis, self-analyzing whether or not one stayed on or fell off the high road; taking into consideration the endeavors carried out or personal contacts we were  involved in. Accountability and/or being responsible doesn’t just pertain to one person, one employer, one culture, one country, but to everyone living and breathing on this planet.

It’s obvious that money, greed, power and lack of responsibility as well as accountability, has always been at the root of mankind’s problems; all common denominators entwined over time and linked historically to other cultures/societies that have failed. A simple, current day analogy that comes to mind is one I happened to encounter this morning at a shop I take my dog to for monthly haircuts. There was a colored flyer lying on the welcoming desk that featured a new veterinary clinic that advertises low prices and good service. Isn’t this the way most people start out–more than happy to be in business, out of school, ready to get out of debt as well as willing to work hard to get ahead.

The scenario continues. Time ticks away and before long, the enthusiasm starts to wane. The realities of life, including but not limited to, caring for a family, ongoing issues running a business, taxes, clients, illnesses etc., all take their tolls. Service prices have gone up one or more times to help cover the rising overhead and that business everyone was so excited to join at the beginning, has now joined the ranks of similar businesses who are and have been pricing themselves out of most people’s budgets. The costs of operating the business has increased, including supplies and salaries etc., therefore, more of a strain in the struggle to stay in business with constant efforts trying to find something to give them the edge. Would you say the initial purity or integrity has been compromised secondary to loss of control?

What about the people who helped contribute to the success of that business? Obviously, they were able to take advantage of the good services but now are faced with  increase in service costs and less accessibility. Do they stay with this business and tighten their budget or move on and hope to find another start-up business with better costs and over the top service? Or, do they challenge the businesses’ integrity and ask why they are not being accountable to you, the customer? In reality, most people are too afraid or don’t want to be bothered with the task ,yet are out there bad mouthing or spreading negative comments.

Having been in several successful healthcare practices, I have seen this scenario occur. Once success became obvious, the vendors and suppliers appeared to demand more for the same products/services, staff want raises, rent and insurance premiums increased; all of which were obviously passed on to the clients by the increased rates for services. Is there a responsible person in charge of management? Services still occur with no significant change in patterns but are now more expensive. Is this merely the price of  the machine getting too big or greed on the part of all parties involved? Has accountability been dropped or slipped through the cracks?  Is the almighty dollar more important than integrity or loyalty to the clients? The cycle continues until a crises or major change throws a wrench into the spokes, bringing all to a halt.

This is where I personally think we all need to draw the line as clients, for example. We don’t have to accept things as they are. Has anyone even questioned and/or asked why the significant changes that affect others? Yes, we all have the right to choose to go elsewhere but prior to that, there needs to be feedback so that a door can be opened to bring about potential change for the better. You see such practice surrounding people or businesses of integrity. There really are such entities that truly care about others through what they say and followed up with what they do–truly being accountable.

The underlying principle here isn’t directed only to people in business but to people in general. The only way to keep accountability in the equation is for each and every one of us to not only act responsibly, with accountability as the underlying motivator, but also hold others to the same levels. No more not caring. We all need to be better stewards of our planet so why not start being individually responsible and accountable for what we do, with hopes for a ripple effect across the globe. Nothing better than teaching through example.

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