The task of stimulating business growth covers a number of disciplines, especially in the manufacturing industry. Being in charge of a manufacturing facility will demand a number of qualities, including accountability. But achieving accountability is a mighty test, especially in a fast-paced environment with a number of technical components.
However, there are some strategies we can use:
Utilize key performance indicators
Being able to measure and track how your facility is performing is essential and will help you to set clear goals and targets so you can measure the progress necessary to achieve these.
There are manufacturing monitoring software packages that can help you gain a clearer picture of employee performance and therefore the overall facility performance. KPIs are a key part of any organization and when you have real metrics in place your accountability will increase, but so will your team’s accountabilities.
Prioritize accountability training
It can be so easy in a factory environment to give them the basic skills and send them on their merry way. Training is one of those things that we should never view purely as a box-ticking exercise but should be something that we take seriously enough to improve our accountability as factory leaders.
If your employees are more confident and competent in their abilities this improves accountability over the business, it increases productivity but it also means that you can feel far more at ease with regards to meeting targets and ensuring that you build a culture of accountability.
Encourage, do not force
The biggest problem with accountability is that as a manager you can try to enforce the idea of accountability as a team but you’ve got to lead by example. You can allow employees a greater degree of autonomy.
While this can increase engagement you still need to balance autonomy with accountability and this means that you cannot be quick to blame employees if you’ve encouraged them to go in a certain direction only for it to not bring about results. Autonomy should come from you as a way to set the template for your business, but you need to implement processes that improve accountability across the board.
You can do this by identifying individuals that are responsible for specific projects, tasks, or outcomes, and this will make for a greater sense of clarity in the organization. Project management tools are invaluable here because it provides a very clear delineation of duties, including your own.
Be open with your communication
Improving accountability within yourself is about looking at how you lead. We have to create a safe and open environment for employees to feel free so they can ask questions, bring up concerns, or provide any form of feedback.
There are many organizations where employees do not feel that they can give feedback, especially freelancers with a long-term relationship with a company or those who work zero-hour contracts. If you want to improve your accountability as a leader you have to look at how you lead and remember that an open-door policy is one of the best ways to ensure that every facet of the organization will improve on its collaborative skills and can meet your expectations.
It’s very easy for leaders to give orders with no questions asked but this is a very inefficient approach, especially in the accountability stakes.
Focusing on continual improvements
Within the manufacturing industry, continuous improvement becomes invaluable because any little problem with the machine can result in a major loss by increasing system downtime. If you want to improve your accountability you’ve got to implement continuous improvement processes by evaluating those procedures, identifying where you can improve, and implementing these changes that will over time improve your business.
Create a culture of accountability
If you want to create long-term success it has to go beyond processes and procedures. We don’t just want to be accountable but we want to ensure that everybody feels like they can take the lead in their role. Fostering a culture of accountability is about stimulating big-picture thinking while also reminding employees that there is a greater sense of responsibility and ownership that’s not just about passing the buck but it will give them a greater input into what the business can do in the long run.
Accountability is a critical component to guarantee successful operations. Accountability will always start at the very top and therefore it’s our responsibility to create a culture of accountability, while also setting the tone where the entire concept of accountability is not just expected, but valued and in demand.