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How to build accountability on Your Team and In Your Home

"Accountability is the glue that binds commitment to results."

As a basketball coach or parent, your mission is to create a team that works together with passion, enthusiasm, and skill. Building a great basketball team or family team which executes well even under difficult circumstances requires accountability from every member of the team.  Great teams happen not only when the players are accountable to their coach but also when they are accountable to each other. Joe Dumars from the Detroit Pistons said, "On good teams, coaches hold players accountable, on great teams players hold other players accountable." At NBC we believe that on the best teams, each individual holds him or herself accountable and the higher each person's individual commitment to accountability the greater the team. 

Accountability is a an intentional decision to be responsible for our actions, words and impact.  Accountability comes from the idea of being answerable or responsible.  Digging deeper, accountability means to have obligation to do something.  

On teams and in families we are answerable for our actions. Here is a team/family self-check to see if we are fulfilling our obligation to the team.

1. Do my actions help make this team/family stronger and more unified?
2. Do the words that I speak to myself and others build up the team/family?
3. Can people trust me to follow through?
4. If I have a task to complete is it done with excellence?
5. Am I actively seeking ways to make the team/family better?
6. Am I working hard to improve my skills and contribution to the team?

After everyone on the team clearly understands his or her obligation to the team, accountability is the process by which the team ensures these obligations and expectations are being met. Without accountability, there is no language or ability for the team to address poor performance or bad character.  Without this honest assessment of the team, the team no longer can execute at its optimum level. The more the team is reliant on accountability from parents or coaches rather than on self-responsibility and internal obligations to fulfill expectations, the more dishonesty, apathy, or confusion will result.  

Here are a few ways to improve accountability on a team and in a family.

1. Clear articulation by every member of the team/family what the vision and mission of the team are and looks like in practical, everyday habits and tasks.

2. Committed attitudinal buy-in to the mission and vision of every member that is genuine and passionate.

3. Daily reflection and reminders on how to live in congruence with the mission generated by the individual, not others.

4. Every member of the team should have a clear picture of his or her goals, obligations and ways of relating that can help the team or family be better.  For example, I should be working daily on my ball handling so that the team can trust my skills when I get the ball. I should be speaking to my sister every day with kindness and in ways that make our friendship stronger.

4. Self-responsibility and willingness to share failures from all members of the team with encouragement and genuine care when members fall short of goals.  If the external motivation to be accountable is stronger than the internal motivation to be accountable the team will eventually break down. 

5. Dissension or disagreement should be face-to-face and team members should be able to speak directly to any member of the team if there is a problem or a frustration. The face-to-face communication should improve relationships not make them worse. If the relationship becomes worse after a face-to-face discussion, the team needs better communication training on how to navigate difficulty.

Accountability comes from the intentional commitment to live life in the best way possible. 

NBC Basketball Camps

NBC means Nothing Beats Commitment. NBC was created in 1971 with the mission to help every athlete become a better player and a better person. If you want to become a great basketball player, business person, family member or leader, it comes down to your willingness to commit to a lifestyle of excellence. Do you live with grit, confidence, peace, joy, self-discipline and if not do you know how to develop these life habits? NBC Camps offer training to help athletes make significant improvements to their basketball game and leadership capacity. NBC Basketball offers overnight camps,  college prep camps, day camps, rookie camps, team camps, specialty camps, travel teams and more. Find out about NBC Basketball Camps at www.nbccamps.com/basketball

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