The Age of Personal Accountability

The age of personal accountability is sweeping the world without many of us necessarily recognising it as such. People in vast numbers are losing trust in establishments and habits that seemed to have served them well in the past. What is happening though is that more and more of us are waking up to the great reality that we cannot rely on or trust the life styles of the past. The implications of this realisation are vast!

The demands of the age of personal accountability is gaining momentum and manifesting in countless ways. The time has come for individuals to default to authentic actions of personal accountability and integrity. The reality is simply that we cannot get away that easily anymore with living a lifestyle of masks.

Our masks are being swept away one be one.

The world wide hunger to seek out authentic leadership and oppose toxic behaviour is a manifestation of the reality that we are living in the age of personal accountability. The pressure is increasing on each of us to account for our own mindset and actions and not hide behind the mask we show to the world.

Tangible evidence of masks being swept away includes the following:

  • A long string of public and even famous figures are being exposed and tumbled daily from lofty pedestals. This is mainly as a result of the dramatic increase in the momentum and power of information flow to the media and specifically the social media. The world will never be the same again.
  • In our daily contact with top leaders in all spheres of society we find an increasing awareness of social pressure and the need to live up to unblemished standards of behaviour. In the past it was maybe possible for prominent figures to get away with living double lives. Not anymore! Chances are sooner or later it comes to light.
  • The surge of social media activity is indicative of a deeper reality of confidence in expressing opinions, both positive as well as negative. It is unfortunately true that negative social media traffic draws more attention in many cases. Whereas in the past, differences in opinion were often expressed mostly in mumblings and grumblings, nowadays it slips into social media and often goes viral to some extent or other. This applies to our local communities as well. It has even escalated into the very social and personal fabric of our schools, homes and families.
  • As the avalanche of social media interaction continues, a corresponding need arises for emotional maturity. A large portion of emotions expressed over social media are emotionally immature and causes considerable hurt and harm to many. We can literally feel a surge of response in an effort to break away from the malice so often portrayed in our social media. We often justify negative comments as being our constitutional right. That may well be the case but our choice to be nasty, unpleasant and even untruthful does not in any way remove the consequences of our behaviour on others and certainly on our own nature and character.
  • Our society has in many ways become a ‘labelling’ society. Each day we can read or hear about a multitude of labels being bandied about in the media and in the passages at work. It is high to be a judge, the saying goes. The truth is that emotionally mature leaders are very wary of jumping to conclusions and judgments without all the relevant information. It is an essential part of our growth as an authentic leader to resist and overcome the tendency to label so easily.

It is one of the great privileges of our mission at Leadership Platform to interview great leaders and performers about leadership matters. So many of these fine leaders are wary of jumping to conclusions and of making harsh judgments of people they work with.

Getting back to you and I as leaders in our own right and environment: We are now entering an age where transparency and accountability are becoming a key attribute of authentic leaders. Leaders who think that they are getting away with wearing masks and living double lives are simply beginning to manifest their level of awareness – or lack of awareness – on different levels! The space for allowance right here is blatantly narrowing.

It is our pleasure and privilege to associate with many leaders and individuals that are the salt of the earth as a result of their passion to do the right things and make a positive difference wherever they may be.

Louis Groenewald – #TheOldMan: is a leadership expert and commentator.

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