September 2011: If there’s a problem, look in the mirror.

As a leader of others, you are accountable for the culture and results of your organization.  And as a leader of your life, you are accountable for your own happiness and fulfillment.  If things are not going well, resist the temptation to blame others or assign excuses.  Look in the mirror, examine your decisions and behaviors, and understand that you are responsible. 
The situation may call for you to make some new choices.  An environment of accountability – across all dimensions of your professional and personal life – is healthy and powerful.  You’ve probably heard the term, “shadow of the leader.”  Whether you’re leading a company, department, team, social group or family, your behaviors will be modeled by others.  By visibly holding yourself accountable, you will set a tone of accountability for those around you -- a beneficial standard by any measure.