Accountability is one of the biggest things anyone who considers themselves a true leader must have. You're not only accountable for your own actions, but those of others based on something you've done or said.

A less than perfect example, but one that's on my mind today, concerns the shootings in Montreal yesterday. Because of investigations that have already been reported, we have learned that there's actually a video game based on the killings at Columbine High School many years ago, called Super Columbine Massacre; nope, no link to it coming from me.

I already know what's coming over the next few days as more and more people will begin to show outrage because most of us had no idea such a game existed. We're going to hear about freedom of speech. We're going to hear about personal responsibility. We're going to hear it's only a game. And the website of this particular game is going to be visited by more and more people, will probably show an increase of members, and the makers will end up making way more money than should be ethically legal. That is, unless the server these people have the game on decides to shut them down. Even the eventual lawsuits that follow won't do anything negative to this company.
I see and hear this type of thing whenever I go into companies or hospitals for consulting assignments. Most of the managers try to absolve themselves of any responsibility for things going badly within their departments; some may be correct, but the overwhelming majority are actually shocked when existing problems are brought to them. And, instead of saying "You're right, I should have known this", they invariably say "It's not my fault; how am I supposed to know that?"

And that's really the difference between good leaders and bad leaders, good managers and bad managers. Bad managers and leaders will dodge and deflect. Good managers and leaders, even if they're not sure how something should be done, will usually know what the problems are, that something needs to be done, and won't be afraid to accept assistance to get the right thing completed. Good managers and leaders will never intentionally put anyone else into a situation where something negative can occur.

And leading impressionable, younger people, to places where their minds probably shouldn't be going, all in the name of making a dollar, isn't good leadership in any way. I hope someone gets held responsible for it in the long run.