Apparently, this is a hard concept for people to grasp, but we cannot control the actions (or inactions) of anyone but our own self. To further this point, we are not responsible for anyone’s actions (or inactions) but our own. Let that sink in for a few moments.
The first thing I tell my clients when they approach me is that they will be held accountable for their portion of the project. I will not do their projects for them, I will do their projects with them.
They will receive a to do list, I will receive a to do list, and we each receive a time line. Under no circumstance will the other person be liable if one of us does not get a task done properly or on time. We both need to deal with the consequences of our own actions.
I should note that accountability and consequences are two different things and consequences are not necessarily bad.
If we both complete our portions of the project as outlined, the consequence is having a wonderfully completed project (good). If one of us does not complete our portion of the project, the consequence can be a delay in the project (bad).
Having accountability means that if there is a hiccup, we can look through what needed to be done, but wasn’t – then correct it.
If a client is unwilling to be held accountable for their own actions, then that is a client you do not need or want. It’s usually the indicator of a person who doesn’t want to do anything for himself and wants someone else to run his life for him.
If a person shows that they do not want to be responsible for their own actions – then that person has another think coming and it’s someone you should disassociate from ASAP. You may just find yourself being blamed for something you had no control over.
With that said – remember that you are only in control of yourself. Control over anything else is an illusion. Live your life to the best of your ability. Say what you mean, do what you say, and mean what you do because you are responsible for it.