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Accountability or Responsibility?

I was asked: „If you were to change the Scrum Guide: what would you change?“

My answer is: the „accountabilities“. I think it should be „responsibilities“. I see too many people not understanding that it is not just a role to play or a list of tasks to fulfill in a Scrum Team but to take on responsibility and ownership of it!

This could be a language thing. In German (as well as in other languages) we do not really distinguish between responsibility and accountability and there are different definitions out there. I personally like the view that responsibility is having the inner motivation and taking ownership of a topic while accountability is the outside expectation and obligation of the topic.

Even if I have a clear understanding what one or the other word means I cannot be sure that people I am talking to have the same understanding.

That’s why.