How to Make Accountability Partnerships Work

One of the simplest and most effective ways to accomplish your goals is to rely on an accountability partner. Checking in with a buddy about your daily actions, your weekly accomplishments, your monthly roadblocks, and your yearly goals will keep you on track and actually help you generate bigger results quickly.

When I look back on my most focused and productive career peaks, they all have one thing in common: accountability. I rely on my accountability buddy to help me prioritize my immediate goals, take smart actions daily, and most importantly, celebrate the process.

Over the years, I’ve had several accountability partnerships; some worked wonders, others… not so much.

But I can tell you that when you find the right buddy, magic happens.

So, let me walk you through my three most successful accountability partnerships to help you get the support you need to fast-tack your acting career goals.

The Daily Buddy Check-In

For more than a year, I partnered with a buddy named Jessica and we began each day with an accountability call. Jessica and I were both building our businesses at a rapid rate. Though our businesses were different, we operated in the same way. We’re both quick decision makers, hard workers, and big thinkers. These similarities made us the perfect match for daily accountability calls.

These calls lasted about twenty minutes and they were designed to help us both laser in on the day’s top priorities. Not only was my year with Jessica the most productive, but our daily calls also provided an instant confidence boost because I had a buddy to remind me every day of the mini accomplishments that I often ignored while working away on my own.

Here’s what the daily buddy check-in looks like:

  1. Jessica called me at 7:00 am sharp.
  2. We each took ten minutes to share and we took turns going first.
  3. During our allotted time, we shared what we accomplished the day before. Then we identified the immediate priorities for that day. Lastly, we discussed what, if any, insight or support we needed from the other person.

If you’re looking for more focus or you just need a swift kick in the rear, the daily buddy check-in is just what the doctor ordered!

The Weekly Buddy Deep Dive

I think of daily accountability check-ins as a daily jumpstart to my business battery. But sometimes, I need more than just support. That’s where a weekly accountability buddy comes in.

A couple of years ago, I partnered with a wonderful woman named Lucy for a deep dive call each week. During these hour-long calls, Lucy and I relied on our personal expertise to coach each other. You see, Lucy and I have opposite strengths.

My business was more evolved than hers, so I could share how-to tips to help her develop her marketing muscles. With years of training and work as an expert healer and health coach, Lucy was really spiritual, centered, and in-tune; qualities I wanted to expand in myself at the time.

That’s why she and I made the perfect pair to dive deeply each week into strengthening our ‘weak spots’.

Our weekly deep dive calls look like this:

  1. I called Lucy every Monday at 8:00 am.
  2. One of us volunteered to go first.
  3. We started by sharing a brief overview of the previous week’s events.
  4. Then, we lasered in on specific questions we had for the other person.
  5. We addressed all of the first person’s questions.
  6. Then, person one committed to take specific actions before the next call.
  7. Next, it was person number two’s turn.
  8. At the end of the call, we congratulated each other on all of the progress we made.
  9. These calls were typically an hour long and I was always amazed by how quickly time flew by!

If you’re feeling stuck in your career and want deeper support, the weekly buddy deep dive is for you.

The Monthly Buddy Brainstorm

Last but not least is my brainstorming buddy, David. One of my favorite people on the planet. David is a mover and a shaker with a strong business mind. David and I loved meeting monthly to talk shop and conceptualize new ideas together.

Here’s a sample structure for the Monthly Buddy Brainstorm:

  1. David and I set a date and time for our monthly in-person. We’re both so busy that the dates often shifted, so rather than having a set date, we scheduled our meetings whenever we could.
  2. We began each meeting by setting clear intentions around what we wanted to contribute and how we wanted to benefit from our time together.
  3. One of us then volunteered to share first.
  4. We highlighted successes for the month.
  5. We then addressed a specific project to brainstorm about.
  6. As the conversation unfolded, we offered up ideas, support, and resources for the other person.
  7. David and I identified the specific actions we want the other to hold us accountable to.
  8. At the end of the meeting, we’d schedule our next one.

If you’re truckin’ along in your career endeavors and just want an outside perspective every once in awhile, try the monthly buddy brainstorm on for size.

How to Form Your Accountability Partnership

You know better than I do what type of person and what type of partnership will work best for you. But let me share a few tips to help you create your accountability partnership.

Tip 1: Reach Outside Your Inner Circle

Try to partner with someone who is not a close friend, relative, roommate or partner. You’ll see deeper benefits from your buddy relationship if the waters aren’t muddied. Ideally, the foundation for this partnership should be that you both want to focus on your careers and you’re seeking support from a neutral party. You’ll find that your buddy will evolve into a close friend naturally, which is an added bonus. But don’t assume your best friend is the ideal accountability partner.

So, think of three or four people you know, but who aren’t necessarily in your inner circle yet. You could ask a classmate, a former colleague, or even the friend of a friend to try out the buddy system with you.

A lot of proactive and positive actors support each other on my Facebook wall. If you need help finding a partner, post your request on the wall and try to find yourself a match in that community.

Tip 2: Set a Firm Foundation

Identify what date and time you will connect. Agree upon who is responsible for initiating the call. Set ground rules about confidentiality, topics you’ll cover, and acceptable reasons to miss a call. Also, share what you both want to gain from the partnership and how you can support one another. Creating this foundation in the beginning will help you both get exactly what you need and know exactly where you stand in the relationship.

Tip 3: Keep Your Word

The buddy system only works if you work it. So, don’t try this at home if you’re not willing to commit. You’ll only get out of the relationship what you put in. And though it may feel like work, once you get your buddy system up and running, you’ll experience the incredible power of teamwork for yourself.

Truth time: I have not had a consistent accountability buddy since my daughter was born. And it is time. So, my intention this week is to reconnect with my tried and true buddies to get extra support.

I hope you’ll do the same!

Comments

  1. This was one my favorite things I took away from the Actors Business Breakthrough! I partnered up with my buddy Sarah during that workshop, and 5 years later we’re still going strong two times a week. She has been an integral part of every major success I’ve had in the last few years. Such a powerful tool, thank you for introducing me to it Dallas!

  2. I am so clear that SO MUCH of my momentum has been thanks to my Accountab-billa-buddies! And I love this to give us more structure to be more effective supporting each other. Thank you!

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