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Accountability: what does it really mean?

“With great power comes great responsibility” is a proverb that is credited either to the philosopher Voltaire or to Spider-Man’s Uncle Ben depending on who you ask. But regardless of source, it encapsulates the concept of accountability perfectly. When a person is accountable for something, they are held responsible for that thing. In return for being responsible, that person is then given authority. The expectation that the person will continue to act in a responsible manner is the act of holding someone accountable.

You are foremost accountable to yourself

A leader is accountable to everyone under them, but they are first and foremost accountable to themselves. How far do you want to go with your career? What are your goals? The only person with the power to reach your goals is you. True leaders understand that fact. They understand that having a career and being a leader means a lot more than just showing up to collect a paycheck. It means setting goals and then holding yourself accountable for them. 

When you hold yourself accountable that often communicates to others that you are a powerful person. That’s because a powerful person will say what they mean and then act on it. That simple act of following through makes all the difference. We’ve all known people who talk a good game but never follow through. That’s not the kind of person anybody turns to for leadership. People naturally turn to those they feel will deliver on things they say they will do when looking for leadership in any situation.

Accountability applies in good times and bad

It’s easy to be accountable when things are going well. But true leaders will always own their mistakes. President Harry S. Truman knew this and he eloquently phrased it when he said: “the buck stops here”. It’s tough to own it when you make mistakes but owning them shows integrity, and people respect that. It shows others that you hold yourself accountable, and that builds trust.

Accountability applies to everyone

No matter what position you hold in the company, we are all accountable to each other. It’s commonly said that there’s no ‘i’ in teamwork but there is an “a”. Winning teams are built of players that are accountable to one another and sets each other up for success. One of many reasons Freedom Forever has been able to grow so fast is that we set each other up for success.

What accountability means to Freedom Forever

Accountability is one of Freedom Forever’s core values. What accountability means to Freedom is that we are all responsible to complete the tasks we are assigned, to perform the duties required by our jobs and that we must all be present to fulfill or further the goals of the organization.

One of the most important ways you can be accountable includes making sure you show up on time and ready for work. As a team, we all depend on each other to bring our “A” game to our work. You can do a lot to ensure our success by being accountable to yourself and everyone else.

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