Several clients have asked me how to create more of an “ownership” mentality among their staff. Although there are several factors involved, I believe three key elements are essential to getting your staff to think and act more like owners instead of just employees.


1. Transparency. 

People need to understand what is actually going on in the business to get involved in the business. Here is a hard-and-fast rule: People without access to information do not have to take accountability for their actions. Suppose you do not share critical business information with your team. In that case, there is no way they can contribute to thinking like an owner in making vital business decisions. I feel that short of actual salary numbers and truly proprietary business secrets, you should share as much information as possible with everyone who works with you. Information is power, and the more you share it, the more power you give to your staff in helping to make the business successful.


2. Clear and Quantifiable Goals.

A team member cannot take an ownership mentality for the success of the company if they do not clearly understand what “success looks like and precisely how you will measure it. The single most important factor in building a “culture of accountability” is making sure that every team member has specific, detailed, and measurable performance objectives.


3. A Stake in the Outcome.

If you want a team member to act like an owner, you have to treat them like one. The best way to do that is to tie their compensation directly to their performance and the company’s overall performance. It is straightforward: what gets measured and paid for gets done.


So, let’s figure out where your firm stands on these three essential factors.

Please answer the following questions on a scale of 1 -10. With ten being “We are excellent at this – truly world-class” all the way down to a score of one, which equals “We are terrible at this – we do not do it at all.”

We openly share all critical business information with our entire team/organization. _________

Everyone in our organization has very clear, specific, and measurable performance objectives. ______

We generously reward (both in money and praise) those employees who have a true “ownership mentality” and consistently meet or exceed their performance objectives. _______

We deal decisively with mediocre team members who consistently does not meet their performance objectives. _______


Any score below a 7 is cause for concern. A score lower than 5 is probably a significant issue in your organization.

I firmly believe that if you are open and honest with your team, share as much information as possible, set very clear and specific performance objectives, and reward them for achieving and exceeding those objectives… you will have built a solid foundation for creating a high-performance team that thinks like owners and takes personal accountability for the business’s success. Precisely what every company needs more of right now!

Please visit my site at if you want to get in contact with me. I’d love to hear from you.

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