There’s a one-two punch when it comes to working with our team. All too often… we miss one of the two key elements to supporting our employees to be the best versions of themselves.

We need to hold them both capable and accountable. How are you doing on that front?

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Hey everybody. Drew McLellan here from Agency Management Institute, this week coming to you from Orlando, Florida. You know, I’ve been talking to a lot of agency owners about how they handle their one-on-one meetings and their regular conversations with their employees. One of the things that I think is missing is this idea of holding our people both capable and accountable. And what I mean by that is when you’re talking to a team member about something that you need them to do, A) let’s assume that they’re capable of doing it, but B) let’s check in and make sure they’re capable. Do you have all the tools you need? Are you comfortable? Do you need to meet with someone or get some information from someone else to be confident that you can get this done? That’s holding them capable. And then after you have a conversation where they say to you, “Yes, I am able to do this. I feel confident to do this,” then it’s about holding them accountable. All right, so we’ve agreed that you are capable of doing this or we’ve agreed that you’ve got everything you need, so let’s talk about now when this is going to get done and who is going to see it next or what happens next? One of the things that I think drives agency owners nuts is this sort of running script in the back of our head that we have to remember all of these things that other people are doing, or we have to check in on someone or check in with someone. But when we hold someone capable and accountable, what that means is that what we’re saying to them is that they can do both of those things all by themselves. So again, I’m holding you capable, you have everything that you need to get it done, and I’m also going to hold you accountable, meaning you and I are going to agree right now when the next step happens so I don’t have to worry about it. I can take it off my to-do list because I know it’s firmly and fairly on your to-do list. It’s a great combination, but I think oftentimes we miss one end or the other. We either make sure that they know how to do it but we’re not sure when it’s going to get done, or we are confident they can do it, they’re confident they can do it, but we have no idea when it’s coming back to us, and so then we worry about it and we have to check in, and that’s when they feel like they’re being micromanaged. So, capable and accountable, try both. I’ll see you next week.

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