Accountability is addressed in an appreciative way by setting up follow-up sessions to share progress and roadblocks encountered, with a spirit of supporting each other to be successful. Weekly or monthly “check signals” meetings allow for rapid pivoting when unforeseen events happen that affect the plans, either positively or negatively.
The matrix above is an image of what a monthly appreciative reporting and replanning session can look like. John Miller developed this, a process where each team can summarize their accomplishments, roadblocks, future commitments and money and put them on the wall in a column under their team name for all to see.
The questions down the left side that each team answers are
- What are the accomplishments of the past month?
- What were the roadblocks we encountered?
- What events and activities are we committed to in the next month?
- How much money have we spent and do we anticipate spending?
These questions can be modified to gather information the group needs to move forward.
When all the report summaries are on the wall and visible to the group, the whole group has a focused conversation about each of these topics one by one, going row by row across the questions. The conversation on the first row is about doing an historical scan resulting in understanding the picture of where the group is now; the second conversation is about root cause analysis and catalyzes strategic actions and process improvements; the third is about aligning plans for the next month and helping each other to sustain momentum; and the fourth conversation is a reality check on the resources required so that finances and budget projections can be adjusted.
This process provides a quick way to update everyone, think deeply, and apply their learnings to planning the next action stage.