Accountability is a hot topic in a lot of companies – and with many leaders.

Sometimes it’s an issue because people aren’t accountable, and things get missed.

Sometimes, people want to be accountable when others think they shouldn’t, and it becomes a ‘stay off of my turf’ dynamic.

Whatever the reason, getting crystal clear on who is accountable saves a lot of grief.

Even for simple things in your personal life, like booking a family vacation. You want to make sure you know who’s booking the flights, the hotel, the rental car and tickets to the show.

That’s usually easy to figure out, with a small group of people but, in business, when it comes to larger and cross-functional teams, there’s a tool that’s been around for a long time – a best practice that helps you to get clear on project ownership that also makes execution and evaluation, at the end. much easier.

We also use it to debate decisions; and for rocks or goals in strategic planning.

“Someone needs to own it. There’s a reason there’s only one steering wheel in a car.”

The RACI model helps you determine who is:

  • Responsible: The person who does the work
  • Accountable: The decision maker and the person who makes sure the work is done to the expected level.               .
  • Consulted: People whose opinions/input are sought before the decision is made or action taken. If you don’t consult the right people you may build a system that’s good in theory, but not in practice.
  • Informed: People who are kept up to date on progress/completion of the task.

This may seem like overkill for some small organizations but, as companies grow and departments get bigger and work more independently, being clear – and defining and agreeing up front who is doing what – saves time, money and confusion.

For example, you don’t want customer-facing people finding out you’ve made changes to the invoicing system after a customer tells them.

And is IT accountable for the new CRM system or are the users?

And take new product development: people – sales, finance and everyone else – love to have input into marketing. There can be friction, or people wanting to take control too much – or not enough.

Being clear helps everyone.

The Challenge

  • What projects do you have right now that would benefit from RACI?

For more about RACI, listen to this episode of The Growth Whisperers podcast.