367 | Leading High Levels of Communication and Accountability

How well do your team members understand each other? Do they ever argue? How well do they work together and make decisions?

Communication is the most important part of culture for leaders to lead well, and right on its heals is accountability.

When there are high levels of both of these, team productivity soars!

Listen to this episode of The Chris LoCurto Show or watch the video below to learn from my VP of Leadership Development, Joel Fortner, and me as we unpack DISC personality styles and accountability and how it can contribute to your team’s success.

For full transcript, continue reading:

Welcome to the Chris LoCurto show where we discuss leadership and life and discover that business is what you do, not who you are.

Welcome to the Chris LoCurto show. Today we are going to do something a little different. With everything that is going on in the world. We want to encourage you and give you some hope as well. So whether you are a business owner or a stay at home parent who has suddenly become your kid’s teacher, uh, we want to encourage you during this time. So today we’re going to share with you part of the conversation that Joel and I had on our Facebook live recently. So if you want to watch the entire discussion, please visit our page on Facebook. We hope you find some good news in the conversation today and we thank you for joining us.

DISC Personality Styles

Joel: I’m Joel Fortner, Chris’s VP of Leadership Development on the appointment routine. And today we’re going to see more about leadership. Um, Chris recently said in a previous Facebook live, I asked you what’s one of the, one of the best things leaders can be doing right now in order to survive, thrive, capitalize on opportunities. No one knows exactly the way this is going to play out or when it’s going to end. Um, but you answered that question by saying, leading each team member on your team to be successful is crucial right now. Leading them to be successful and two of the things that, that we teach all the time that are part of that leading each team to be successful are leading high levels of quality communication and leading strong accountability, having strong accountability, um, growing a culture of strong personal responsibility. And that’s sort of underneath that that top level lead people to be successful. And so part of that communication and accountability, uh, that if for some of you, if you followed us for years, that you will know this. Um, for some of you who are new to us, that we are huge on DISC personality styles as being part of the, how do I lead high levels of quality communication, but also how do I lead my team members to have greater performance and productivity every single day? What does that look like? Well, we, we, we spend so much time teaching leaders DISC’s. So Chris, before we get too deep into this, um, when we say DISC, some people are maybe familiar. Enneagram has become super popular nowadays, but DISC is tried and true and we teach it as we say, because it’s simple. It’s easier to remember. But could you whatever you want to speak to on that. But could you also give folks kind of a DISC one on one?

Chris: Yeah. There are a lot of great personality profiles out there. Uh, Enneagram’s a fantastic one. Um, the thing, the reason why we continue to stay with DISC is because we’re hitting four main elements. So if you did like a Myers-Brigg, there’s 16 different elements and trying to communicate it. So it’s one thing to learn a personality style that you’re learning about yourself. It’s another thing for leaders to be leading these personality styles and in understanding everybody’s, uh, how they act, react, how they give information, how they receive information. We use two different programs and one is DISC personality style, DIS and C. And then we use values also known as motivators. Uh, if you take a look at Enneagram, it’s like a phenomenal combination of the two. But our hope is is to lead leaders into understanding personality styles enough that they can actually speak to it on a continuous basis. So we, when we say disc D, I, S and C, now you are not one letter. You’re not just one personality style and you have percentages of every personality style and that percentage can change. Uh, it, it can be different in your natural, your comfort, your, your home life, uh, and it can be something different in your work, your stress life. So we have what we call the natural and the adapted. You can adjust, right? So when you’re comfortable, when it’s just you, your family, you’re hanging out, then you are how you are most natural. If you’re in a work environment or a secular environment, which we’re not seeing a ton of that right now. But uh, then you tend to be what we call the adapted, which is you are being the personality style that you want people to see and what you assume they see as well.

Joel: Uh, so what do I do when I’m at home and I’m working? Right.

Chris: Well, so that’s, we are seeing a lot of adapted personality styles in the virtual world, right? Because you’re still dealing or leading people or talking to people. That’s not your normal. It’s not, you know, it’s not like you’re turning, you know, going into the kitchen and, or living room talking to them. It’s Mary Beth, whatever. That’s your natural when you’re leading clients or you’re talking with folks, then we’re still in that adapted. But the major thing when it comes down to personality styles on, on DISC personality styles and we have so much information. So what I’m going to summarize here just a couple of minutes. We have literally hours of stuff teaching on this stuff. D I S and C. D is that dominant personality style, that high driver, that very decisive person, the take charge kind of person. That’s the kind of person. If there’s no leadership, they will step up and take leadership. Uh, they’re the kind of person who can get things done really, really fast and drive it to success. Uh, but they’re also the kind of person who doesn’t like details. So success might be completed but ugly. It might not be pretty right, but it’s done. And that’s the important thing. Um, we do a whole lot of teaching when we talk about what’s maturity and immaturity. So if I’m talking about any of the negatives here, I’m talking about immaturity. Immaturity is not defined by age. You can be a 70 year old, immature, high D I S or C. it’s not understanding yourself very well. So maturity is understanding how you act, react, give information, information, you know, you ah, that’s when you begin to mature and your personality style and then you become even more mature when you really start to understand that other folks. So in the, uh, negative side, the high D is, doesn’t recognize that people have feelings that they have, you know, emotions that, uh, that they should be concerned about how somebody else is receiving something or thinking about something so they can drive things and hurt feelings at the same time.

Right. That I the high influencer, Joel, you’re a 99 I, people person love people. Um, love being the center of attention in a group of people, are great at influencing folks, great at getting people encouraging. You’re always a phenomenal encourager, great at encouraging people to get things done, leading them with encouragement itself. I’m so great at leading people. On the negative side- Don’t like details, uh, sometimes don’t realize how important details are and don’t put enough emphasis on the importance of certain situations. Uh, and sometimes can, you know, really be focused on still the people side instead of like the task side, the high S uh, the stable amiable person, which by the way, 10% of the population are high Ds, 25% of the population are high Is. Then we get to the highest 40% of the population is the highest. It’s the most misunderstood personality style by far. This is the very stable, amiable person, very loyal, very loving. Loves people like crazy. Never wants to be the out front center of attention person is always the, let me be in the background’s setting up for success kind of person. The kind of person that, uh, will absolutely think about everybody’s needs. What do people need? How can they serve people? How can they take care of people on the negative side and the immaturity side, they’re also people that struggle to make decisions when other people are involved, they are so focused on taking care of other people, but sometimes they can hold off on making, you know, kind of procrastinate on decision making because they’re worried that they’re going to hurt somebody or affect something in about negative way. Um, because they’re focused on people this way. The other three personality styles, the D I and C actually don’t understand this.

They just think that they’re lazy, can’t make decisions and it has absolutely nothing to do with that. It’s that they’re so concerned about other people that they struggle to not fail. Hate. Absolutely hate conflict by the way. Hi. C is that compliant, detailed personality style. But the one that I always joke about, the, the high Cs, two favorite places are Google and Excel spreadsheets because you can Google anything. How do you build a space rocket? Google it, it’s, it’s there. Well now, nowadays the younger generation, it would be YouTube, uh, YouTube that thing and find out, well where would you build it in an Excel spreadsheet? Because you can do it. You could build anything in an Excel spreadsheet, very detailed, very analytical. Um, when they are focused on the details, they are not people people, they just don’t really care for people in the moment.. But you know, when they recognize the need for people, then they can really engage in that process. But otherwise they really love the task and getting the task done. But the kind of, the higher they are, the more they can do the same exact task every single day, all day long for the rest of their lives and be very content on the negative side because they are so detailed, Sometimes they can over question the daylights out of things. Um, sometimes they can, you know, they, they believe that people just don’t have enough information. They have to feed it, you know, too much information. Which is interesting because a high C to another high C doesn’t give barely any information. They just, it’s like a pickup on the high C scent or something just to get no information at all. You’re a high C, I’m giving you nothing information you don’t. So that’s kind of the breakdown of the D I S and C now again, that is what, five minutes maybe.

Bridging the Communication with Personality Styles.

Joel: But for a lot of people listening, that was a lot. That was like, wow, Holy cow. That was like maybe new for me or that was a good refresher. So, and a lot of that Chris, there’s a lot of detail that you provide there that gives a lot of understanding. Some people may have just thought, Oh wow, that’s me. Oh wow, that’s my leader, or that’s my team member. You just peg them right there. When you describe the high S or the high C. How does a leader make the bridge then to communication? When they understand this kind of information, how does it then transition to improve communication on a team?

Chris: The most important thing you have to do, and that’s why I talk about the maturity side, immaturity side, the most important thing you have to do is first understand the person in the mirror. The sooner I can understand how I receive information, how I give information, how I respond, how I act, how I react to information. The sooner I can figure those things out and understand it and learn it and grow in it, then I know how I give information and that’s the biggest key, right? So if I am a high D, then the last thing I want to do is spend time explaining to you, you know, 700 different ways how you can make toast. It’s just that you know, I don’t don’t want to go through every detail. You put the bread in the thing, you press the button, man. That’s, I mean it’s really not that difficult, right?

That’s, that’s how high D thinks. But if I’m a high C and I don’t understand what the button is, which button are you? Are you talking, you know, what’s the thing? You know? If I don’t say it’s a toaster, that specific unit over there, then I’m looking at the counter and I am seeing, well, you’ve got a toaster, you’ve got a blender, you’ve got a microwave, you’ve got, which thing are you talking about? Right? And so it seems silly and of course I’m using a silly example, but it using it and that basic form, it helps you to understand. If I don’t recognize how I give information, then I’m only going to give information to you the way that I give information. But the sooner I can recognize that I leave out details, that I don’t really give a whole lot of information, that I don’t set you up for success.

The sooner I can recognize, okay, now what do you need for you to be successful? That was one of the things early on in my leadership career, 20 some years ago when I decided to become a personality styles expert. It wasn’t because it was just something I wanted to do. It was because it was pointed out to me that I assumed everybody knew what I knew. Uh, one of the sales team leaders, Theresa Duke, I love her to death. Um, you know, just amazing woman. I brought her in for a meeting. Hey, how can I be better you? And she put it out, your communication is not going very well. She actually said your communication stinks. I was like, what are you talking about? Cause she says, you know the thing that’s going on over here? And I’m like, yeah. She goes, we don’t. Theresa, I just assumed that you knew. And she goes, Chris, that’s your problem. You always assume that we know what’s inside of your head. How could we possibly have it? And so that started beginning phases, not in working in styles for years, but that became a really, really how I communicated because I learned in that moment that I was not setting my team member up for success. I was setting her up for failure. So the more I learned that, then I started going, okay, what is her personality style? Look at every single personality style on the team. How do people need to hear things? How do they need to hear information? If I’m talking to them one on one, if I’m talking to a high D, one, bullet points, it’s going to be bullet points and I’m going to want them to just tell me what it is that you think I want you to do. I want you to, you want me to go do this, this and this. Perfect, great. Go. If I’m telling a high eye, I’m going to recognize that the high is going to both the D and the, I are going to leave without details, but also the high I might not put the importance on the details as well. So many times if I’m talking to a high I instead of just going into here’s the task, go do the thing. I’m going to start off by saying, Hey man, how was your weekend? What’d you guys do too? How’s the, uh, how’s the COVID19 stay-at-home thing working for you? And I might spend, you know, 30 seconds getting personal and say, Hey, here’s what we need to talk about. Explain it, Give direction, ask for questions, but then ask them to repeat it back to me and then find the hole. They may have dropped something. If I’m talking to a high S, then I’m going to realize that change is conflict. The last thing that a high S or even a high C wants is change. They don’t like change. And so as we’re talking about a timeline right now we’re, we’re going through a lot of change. This is difficult. This is difficult for your S’s. This is difficult for your C’s and it’s difficult on everybody, right? But I understand the personality style. Like the D’s are going, dude, give me something, give me something to do. You know, point me in a direction, let me let you know, I’ve got to get out of it. I’ve never spent this much time with my family. I got to get out. You know, it’s like, just give me five minutes.

Uh, so you know, we’re, when you look at those personality styles, you have to think how are they responding to this? And the big change of not going to work every day. You know, working from home, all that kind of stuff. That’s a stressor for high S or high C. So I have to think about the high S, how am I going to communicate whatever it is I’m going to take into consideration that change is conflict. So I’m going to make sure that they’re okay with the thing I’m discussing, but I’m going to help them to see why the thing that I’m discussing is so incredibly important and why it’s so needed. But then I’m going to give them time. I’m going to give them time to process and think through it and ask questions and I’m going to come back to them. One of the big mistakes people make is, And especially as we’re doing this virtually now, one of the big mistakes people make is they will send a meeting request to a high S high C and ask them to come into a virtual meeting room and give me ideas on stuff. They don’t think that way. They need 20, 30 minutes, two hours to think on the thing that you asked. They need to process through it and get to where they feel like they have the right answer. So set them up for success by doing so, uh, and make sure that the high S is okay and make sure that you know, that they, they feel that this isn’t gonna affect anybody in a negative way. The high C it’s going to be about the details baby. I mean, it is the details. They need to know every bit of information and you need to ask them questions. Does this make sense? What questions do you have? Does anything not make sense? Does anything seem awkward or weird or off or you know, ask them a ton of questions to make sure and then make sure that they know that it’s okay for them to ask questions back, if they don’t, a lot of times they’re not going to ask a question cause they don’t want to sound stupid. So make sure that they understand that there is no stupid questions. So that, that that’s a ton. Yeah,it’s a time that there’s a, there’s so much more right there. There’s so much that we can do. We’ll do, we’ll do a, uh, a Facebook live till you drop someday or we’ll never stop and just keep teaching on this.

Next Level Leadership Livestream Event

Hey, leaders, registration to the Next Level Leadership Live Stream event ends today, April 28th at 11:59 PM central time. So if you’ve been wanting to attend this event and haven’t been able to join us here in Nashville, don’t worry. We’re bringing this event to you right in the comfort of your office or living room. So get faith-centered leadership training to help you Live and Lead courageously. Go to chrislocurto.com/livestream that’s one word to sign up today. That’s chrislocurto.com/livestream and join us April 29th through May 1st online.

Leaders who Influence.

Joel: Um, so one of the keys of what you’re talking about, Chris, is that that leaders have to be able to influence their team. Sometimes there’s limiting beliefs. There’s sometimes there’s just stuff that holds leaders back from recognizing, wow, my leadership is needed. What are some of the things that you see maybe the top two, three, four things that just holds leaders back from influencing their team members. Cause man, if they, you can’t get past the this stuff, they’ll never be able to implement what we’re talking about here.

Chris: Yeah. So the answer would be different. Uh, slightly different if we weren’t in the situation that we’re in right now. So with the current climate, I think one of the biggest mistakes any leader can make is because I don’t see my team, I used to work, I see my team, they’re in, they’re in the office, I’m walking around them, I’m talking to them, I’m answering questions. They stopped me, you know, in the event space and ask a question. Whatever it is, is that because the camera goes off and you spend hours without seeing your team that they don’t need to be led. One of the biggest mistakes that you can make right now as a leader is not leading your people during this time. They need extra leadership, an extra focus during a time like this. Like we’ve changed some of our staff meetings and some of our devotional time. We’ve kind of changed the way we do them. Spoken into those things and just talked about what, say what we’re experiencing, what’s going on instead of just hitting it the same way, this way we do stuff. This is stuff you’ve got to go and do. You know, we’ve kind of changed up some of those processes to make sure that we’re leading people well. So that’s one of the big things that you need to recognize right now. One of the other big things to recognize right now, this ain’t going away. This is not changing anytime soon, right? Um, we are just in, I know we’re all, we all cannot wait for the, the whatever, the, the, the cure for this, the virus to die down, the whatever. Right. Okay. Here’s the deal. This has had a massive impact on every aspect of life, right? If you don’t see it yet, then you may be putting your head in the sand hoping that everything just comes out okay.

Which means you’re not leading very well anyways. You need to take a, just a tiny look into the future and ask yourself the question, not, not even your business. What’s going to happen? What do you see coming with business as a whole? What do you see coming when you know, concerts aren’t going to be played because nobody wants to go into a big stadium where you know they’re going to be around a bunch of people, potentially what the virus, right? A new strain of the virus kicks in or whatever. When people don’t travel as much, when they don’t buy the luxury items as much, whatever that is, just take a small peer into the future and ask yourself the question, what can it look like in June? What can it look like in July, August? Then ask yourself the question, what’s going through the minds of your team members?

Tackling Fear

What are they thinking about? So for me in the very beginning, the first thing I wanted to do was get in and talk through fear. That was a big heavy focus for us to make sure that we were talking through fear. We understand, but we’re not, you know, we are believers. We are not going to face this fearfully. We’ve also done so much planning and prep for a time such as this. Uh, I love seeing all the memes going around. They, the meme is incorrect. They’re using the Dave Ramsey, Hey, three to six months of income. It’s actually three to six months of expenses. But either way, at least there, it’s funny that it’s going around the internet. We’ve done planning and prepping. So how do we, since we are here, we don’t go forward with fear. We have clients that need help. We have clients that may be fearful.

We have some clients that have been fearful and some clients that are like, Nope, I’m good. I just need some help over in this area. So first is I need to make sure that I’m taking care of my team in getting them to a place that they’re not freaking out, that they’re not fearful and praise God, we just don’t have that team. Right. It’s not that there wasn’t a little bit of concern. That very first meeting that we had. You could see there was little, Oh my gosh. But it has been phenomenal to watch our team. I just love our team. I mean, they are, Oh, it’s just great to watch them go, yep, this is what we’re doing. You know, things are a little bit different. We’re making this adjustment here. We’re doing this adjust, or we’re doing this thing here, but people are focused.

Our team was focused on serving. They’re focused on taking care of other people. So understand where your team is. They may be stressed, freaked out. Um, if you’re freaked out, then I guarantee you you’re adding to theirs because they’re looking to for leadership. So making sure that you’re not Pollyanna. The situation, Oh guys, everything’s going to be perfectly fine in 2.3 days. Nope. It just isn’t. It just isn’t. It’s not going to be the same anytime soon. And I’m not sure it’s ever going to be in the same, I don’t know. So understand where your people, you know, what they’re feeling, what they’re experiencing. Understand the different personality styles. You might have some high Ds that are like Like, I’m going to go lick every rail in the grocery store because I’m not going to fall for this virus thing. Right. They want me, like I just, I don’t care. I’m getting out. I’m doing my thing. Yeah, it doesn’t matter. Okay, well, well let’s be smart. Let’s make some good, strong decisions. but just take a look at the different personality styles and see how they’re responding and then speak into that. If you have a high S that’s you know, our high C that’s stressed out because the change piece is really freaking them out. Speaking to that, lead into that. Um, if you have a high I who is more of that Pollyannas is just like, well, everything’s going to be fine. It’s going to be fantastic. Well, you know, but let’s take a look at what has changed and let’s get aligned with this type of stuff. So for me, those are big things. Now, again, if we weren’t in COVID19, I would be, that would be answering that question differently. But right now in the climate, those are things you need to be thinking about as a leader.

Where do I start as a leader?

Joel:So where do I start as a leader? Where do I start when it comes to DISC and trying to implement this cause I’m liking what I’m hearing here. I’m assuming that people are, I think that they probably are, but where do I start? You mentioned, maybe it’s with me, but then you’ve talked about I need to get my team members on it, but then I need to get, I need to learn to lean in their direction and gosh, they need to learn to lean and others and it just sounds like a lot.

Chris: Yeah. Well for me, and I always say this on the show, whenever we talk about DISC, if you’ve not had your team go through, get them through, right? Just go to the store, go to our site, put your team through. Yeah. It’s not that difficult. Right? But here’s what you do. Then you take that disc of yours and you read it seven times over. I mean, I want you to read it and you’re going to hate a certain percentage of it. You’re going to, you’re going to think that a percentage is going to be wrong. Ds and Is they look at it and they go, I agree with most of it, but that’s not right. Then I’ll always ask them, Hey, did you show it to your spouse? Yes. What they say, no. They said it was exactly me. Well of course, because they see they don’t like the negative side of what they’re saying.

No personality likes the negative side of what they’re seeing. So you’ve got to one start with you get to a place where you understand you now if you can step it up and even go further. We’ve got the whole lesson that we teach just on understanding discs. That is one of those funny, great, fantastic lessons that we teach that it’s great to sit down with your team. And I always suggest leadership do it first. Go through the video with the leaders, can talk through it and you know, discuss it because you’re going to send for very funny things and some kind of crazy things. But then sit down and with the whole team and go through it and then we’ll let them talk about it. Let them ask questions. I can’t tell you how many times we get people that will tell us. We were literally sitting there watching the video and team members start elbowing each other.

It’s like, Oh, Oh that’s so, you know, he’s talking about you, you know, but then talk through it. So when you can get the basic understanding, you’re dangerous. I always tell people you’re dangerous. Don’t think that you know DISC like a dull knife. That’s right. This is, this is going to take a while. But ask the question how, and we give a bunch of details on things inside of this, but ask the question, how do I start leaning in the direction? How do I talk to this person? So just for example, we’re doing this Facebook live. If it was only high D’s, we would already be done with this. We’d have been done a long time ago. We wouldn’t have, yeah, we would’ve gone on for two minutes would have been done. You have to recognize the group makeup is not all most likely. I mean unless you’re working with nothing but web dev, web dev, you know, most likely it’s, it’s made up of different personality styles.

So you don’t just speak to one, you have to speak to them all. So you ask, like we always say, how do you lean in the direction of the other person? So I don’t need to become Joe Fortner. I just need to know how Joe Fortner receives information best. What sets him up for success. If I will stop thinking about me and I will start thinking about how to communicate to you the best way I possibly can and then assume that I didn’t do a great job by asking what, what, what do you understand? What do you not understand? What all the different questions, make sure that I’ve set you up for success. Then success will happen. You’ll have high levels of quality. No, as we’ve talked through this, there’s some folks out there that are going, man, that’s a lot of work. Yup. Yes it is.Uh, here’s the deal though. What else are you going to do? Right? You have got this time and it doesn’t matter if we’re in COVID19 or not, but you get to high levels of quality communication. It’s going to be that heavy impact on the front side of spending time doing this and working on it. Then it becomes DNA inside of the business or inside of the family. We have plenty of folks that just do this with their own family, right? And it becomes DNA because you have a common language. The common language is DISC. It’s, it’s easy enough to understand. It’s easy enough to, to discuss and talk about. So you have the common language. It starts to be where people start choosing higher levels of quality communication.

Joel: So just this morning, Mary Beth and I, so my wife, um, we were having a conversation and I note all the time, like I think about what we talk about and we literally talk DISC every day. We can’t have a conversation. We can’t go through a day without somebody saying, high S, high I, high C. because we understand that it’s common language, not only just ourselves but our children as well and other people in our life. And so translate this into being a leader. Well, I lead leaders all the time. I lead my leaders and I lead our leader clients all the time. This morning I was asked a question and I immediately ask, what’s their personality style? And outcomes highest high C. so because I understand the attributes of a highest in high C, I can say, this is who you’re talking. This is how you now need to lead them in this conversation. And as soon as I went there and the owner was like, yes, Oh my Gosh, that makes so much sense. It was immediate clarity.

I know exactly what to do now Joel. And he was missing the understanding of the attributes of the the team member. That then translates into just as you’re, as you’re sharing here, Chris, it translates right into how do I now communicate with them.


So let’s switch gears for a few minutes and talk about accountability. Um, we see every single business we work with, the greatest struggles are both communication and accountability or more accurately put lacks thereof. And it results in tons of issues, tons of problems, tons of productivity issues. So we have a saying that guy said, it’s your job to make your team successful, not the other way around. So let me hold that in my left hand and then let me say the word accountability with my right, Chris. There’s a lot of leaders that don’t say, I don’t see how this fits this right here. Can you explain that a little bit?

Chris: Yeah. Let me first hit it from the side of those of us that come from a religious background. For a lot of folks who come out of you, you may have been beaten over the head with the Bible, told how horrible you are and how wrong you are and all that kind of stuff by somebody who has just as much jacked up stuff as you do. And that’s called accountability. So for a long time inside of urge, depending upon which denomination you came out of or really okay, most of them did this, that you would find that the individual, this isn’t God doing this. This is an individual human being who’s telling you how wrong you are, how bad you are, and calling it accountability. That is not accountability. That’s not accountability. So we’ve been working on this for years. Do you actually take that term back and teach it from the right angle? It doesn’t mean that there is not a point of saying, Hey, I need to help you with this. It means that I’m not beating you over the head and telling you that you’re a horrible person. It’s not that I’m trying to hide my own flaws by pointing out your flaws. So if you can get that out of your mind, you know, because a lot of people hear accountability and especially entrepreneurs, business owners. Why do business owners become business owners? Because they don’t want accountability. They don’t want somebody telling them what they should do and you know, pushing on them or pressing into things. And so a lot of times they become a business owner. The thing is without quality accountability, it makes it incredibly difficult to make people successful. So what do we consider as accountability? Accountability is coming in and discovering all the things that one needs to be successful, whether it’s software programs, whether it’s training, it’s teaching, it’s coupling up with somebody in, in learning how to do something, asking questions, whatever it is, and then putting pieces in place to make sure that the thing, the project, the job that whatever gets done.

So accountability is putting in those little pieces that say, is this happening? What’s making it happen? I’m not just talking about just measurables, but if, you know, like for us, one of the big things, uh, is KRA’s. Uh, we do a lot of KRA’s lot of KPIs, a lot of folks come to us for that kind of stuff on the website. And what that is, is it’s a way of being able to say, Hey, here’s what I want you to understand. Here’s your job description. This tells you the things you’re supposed to do in the job. But here’s the results we’re actually looking for. This is where we want you to end up.

The Accountability Gap.

So if we don’t see the results, we have a problem. And one of the things we always say is, is that gap in between what I do and what the result is? That’s that accountability gap, right? So if I’m doing, if you just gave me a job description or if you made a KRA look like a job description that I’m doing, the very things you’re asking me to do and you’re telling me that that’s going to make me successful, but you keep expecting this different results. Well, that gap is the piece where I’m not stepping in and going, why are we not getting to the results? How come? What’s missing? What’s lacking? What does it take to get here? And a lot of times it’s just the fact that I didn’t explain to the team member what the results should look like so that you the task, task, task, task, task, they understand the task, but they’re not understanding what the outcome should be. So they can’t control the outcome because they can’t see the outcome. So when you put things like that in place, when you put accountability in place, whether it’s making sure that your sales team is making all the calls that they need to making sure that your admin team has all the tools that uh, whatever that is, making sure your marketing team has the budget behind them to pull off the result that you’re expecting.

Whatever the stuff that’s needed to get to that result, that’s where you plug in accountability. A lot of times it’s as simple as making sure that the process for the task, the job, the project, that the processes are actually written down and understood. A lot of times that’s going to be a big piece of accountability. So with that being said, in an environment like today when we’ve got, you know, what’s happening, uh, it’s incredibly important when your team is virtual to make sure that you’re putting accountability in place. Are people getting things or are they sitting at home, you know, watching, you know, ridiculous movies on Netflix and you know, working like an hour and a half a day. So what are the accountability pieces that might be more measurable? What does, what do I expect that you get done during this timeframe, this, this, this, this, this must get done. If it doesn’t get done, then I need to jump on a zoom call and find out why, what was missing, what didn’t happen, what did not have, you know, go through all of those processes to make sure we’re getting to the right place so that way I can set you up for success. A great reason for doing this is to discover if I did not do a good job setting you up for success because it might reveal the things that the leader lacked and I can fix that if I don’t know it. I don’t know it, I just look at you and go, well you’re not doing your job. But if I can see that I did not do things to set you up and keep in mind some personality styles, struggle with conflict to tell the leader that they don’t have all the tools or that they don’t have a question answered. So if I’ll jump in and make sure I’m leading that team member, well I might find out, Hey Chris, you’re not communicating on this thing. Your communication stinks cause we really don’t understand what’s going on. Oh, well crud, now that I know that I can fix that.

The Individual Leader and Victim Mentality.

Joel: So both with communication, Chris, and now with accountability, you can keep bringing it back to the individual leader. You keep bringing it back to personal responsibility as the leader. I hope that you, I hope that you guys are hearing that come through because it’s, again, it’s our job to make our team members successful, not the other way around.

Chris: Yeah. We don’t do well with victim mentality and leadership. You’re not a victim.

Joel: Yeah. It looks at, so this brings up the next question that I wanted to ask you was what are the common things that holds leaders back from taking that level of personal responsibility?

Chris: It’s like a softball pitch right to you there. That was perfect. Um, so one of the biggest, okay. Gosh. Mmm. All right. Where do I go? One of the big things. Uh, one of the big lessons that we push for all leaders is killing the leadership crazy cycle. So if you have been overloaded with tasks, if you’re overwhelmed with the amount of work that you’re doing, if you’re overwhelmed trying to make things happen and you’re finding that you’re leading your team about five minutes a week, there’s a reason for that. Uh, somebody has not taught you properly, how to lead somebody has taught you that your importance, your worth is in the number of tasks that you as a leader get done in a day. You’ve got to destroy, we call it killing the leadership crazy cycle for a reason. You’re stuck in this cycle, where you’re, in this overwhelm. You’re getting a ton of tasks done, but you have a team that’s not being led very well or possibly at all. You’ve got to, get out of that cycle. You as a leader are not supposed to be doing most of your job as tasks. Your job is to lead people to success. So that’s one of the big things that you just got to get to a place where you understand how you’re getting stuck in that cycle, how to get out of that cycle. What are the things that are keeping you there? Why do you not delegate properly? How do you, and again, a lot of folks, their biggest fear is, well Chris, I hear you and I get that we’ve had this many times before in the past, but I don’t know how to lead people. If I, I’m afraid that if I take these tasks off, I’m not going to be needed because now I’m not doing the tasks and I’m not really sure how to lead people to success. You got a lot of stuff on that, but let me just say, if you just stop and look at the end of the question, what does this person or this rule need to be successful? And then just work on it with them, bust it with them, jumped in there with them, get the thing done and help them to get really great at that. So that’s one big thing. Um, another big thing is, is, you know, we just, I mentioned the victim mentality and leadership. Man, leadership’s not for wusses. It’s just not, guys. Leadership is about helping somebody else get somewhere, helping somebody else get somewhere where they might not ever get themselves. They might not even think about getting themselves to that place. Leadership is tough for a reason because the job is making other people successful. I can make myself successful if you give me 17 tasks, I can make myself successful in just getting the task done. But when I have to spend time helping you get there, that’s another story. So one of the things that people will miss out on is their responsibility. Now we’re talking about victim mentality and everybody hates it. Everybody hates the term. Everybody can point out seven people who are victims, but they can never see that they choose to be victims themselves. You have to take responsibility for the success of your team, for the success of your business, the success of your role. If you have every reason why you can’t take responsibility and guess what, it’s never going to get to great success because you’ll always have an excuse. You’ll always have a reason that you push back on stuff, right? Well, that’s not my fault. That’s because, Oh well that’s all very well. Let’s, we’ll COVID19. For the love. What we’ve been teaching our clients is find opportunity in COVID19. Understand that there’s ways that you can turn it. Watch this and flip this and move this in a better direction.

So as a leader, if you’re sitting back going, well, I can’t do anything cause the stupid virus, then you don’t understand leading and you don’t understand your responsibility as a leader. You’ve got to get your butt in the game. You’ve got to make sure that you’re taking responsibility. I’m going to do whatever it takes to make Joel Fortner successful today. And here’s the great thing. If you do the things we’ve been teaching, Joel Fortner successful today, because we’ve been doing this, we’ve been walking this road for many years. Your team is successful because you’ve been walking this road with your team. The leaders that you lead have, are successful because you’ve been walking this road with them for a long time. So when you do it, you take the effort, you take the responsibility, you go, Whoa, I got, that’s my role. That’s my job. Let me get in there and get, you know, roll up the sleeves, get my hands dirty, hopefully not with virus, but make sure you wash your hands. Get in there and make things happen. Responsibility.

Livestream Event

Joel: So let me, let me close on this. So I’ll make it just an, I just want to mention the, uh, the live stream event that we have come up as we’ve been talking for probably 45 minutes or so now. And this has been, just super helpful information. I know this is helping people who are watching this are going to watch this on the replay. Um, but ladies and gentlemen and leaders, um, if you want more of this kind of information and training, we do have a way to do that. Uh, it’s our Live Stream Event. So if you follow us, we do a annual leadership event every year. That’s about equipping leaders to be, to confidently lead at all times. And I love what you just pointed out, Chris, that if you do these kinds of things, these leadership activities and you make decisions this way and your mindset is one of personal responsibility, it helps you weather crisis, it helps you weather uncertainty. So we have our live stream, this event, the Next Level Leadership Event is all live stream now April 29th through May 1st it’s a three day live stream event. We’re going to be teaching leadership training and lessons, starting with you. How to lead yourself better to going deeper on personality styles, deeper on accountability and getting to even a ton of plans and processes for you to implement these things that really bring them to life within your business and within your team. So if you want more of this opportunity, where the place to go is to chrislocurto.com/livestream. It’s, I think it’s our fifth year doing this Next Level Leadership Live Event where we’re going to be doing three days worth of leadership training to help you weather this uncertainty help you. If you’re doing great, it’s going to help you do even better as a leader. And if we’re, if you’re out there thinking, well, leadership’s this soft stuff, hopefully you’re hearing it’s not your, because leadership bottom line leadership equates to profit and net profit. And our clients can demonstrate that all day long because it’s about the quality of decision making that you make as a leader, which what’s a critical there is what you believe as a leader. So do you believe it’s your job to make your team successful? Not the other way around. And if you take that attitude into it, you will see amazing fruit come from it in your team. That also hits in, will show up in the P and L as well. so the place to go is chrislocurto.com/livestream so Chris, thank you so much, brother, and thanks for taking some time and folks, I hope this has been helpful. Thanks guys. All right, we’ll see you soon. [inaudible].



Walk through your challenges with one of our coaches for FREE and see the difference a shift in mindset can make. 


Get more out of your business, your team, and yourself than you thought possible. Sign up to get free leadership tips and advice today.

Check Our Podcast


Sign up for weekly curated insights and frameworks from coaches, leaders, and business owners that help you take your business to the next level.


Meet Chris LoCurto


Chris has a heart for changing lives by helping people discover the life and business they really want.

Decades of personal and leadership development experience, as well as running multi-million dollar businesses, has made him an expert in life and business coaching. personality types, and communication styles.

Growing up in a small logging town near Lake Tahoe, California, Chris learned a strong work ethic at home from his full-time working mom. He began his leadership and training career in the corporate world, starting but at E'TRADE.