Self Track

Self Track

Video Overview

Tom Smith, Co-Founder, Bestselling Author of The Oz Principle, introduces you to The New York Times Bestselling book (view Tom’s bio). The Oz Principle is ranked among the top 5 bestselling leadership books since 1994.


Getting Results Through Individual And Organizational Accountability


# 1 Leadership Book – The New York Times

# 1 Leadership Book – Wall Street Journal

# 1 Leadership Book – USA Today

# 1 Leadership Book – Publisher’s Weekly

See the list

The Oz Principle is the groundbreaking work that demonstrated the vital role of accountability in the achievement of business results and the improvement of both individual and organizational performance. With more than a half-million copies sold, The Oz Principle has emerged as one of the most influential and useful business ideas of recent times.

Partners In Leadership is the bestselling authors of the book, The Oz Principle: Getting Results Through Individual And Organizational Accountability, which has been published in two dialects of Chinese, Japanese, Korean and Spanish. Adrian Zackheim, President and Publisher of the Portfolio brand of Penguin Putnam Books, says of The Oz Principle: “This book is in the top 5 bestselling business books in the ‘Leadership’ and ‘Performance’ categories, year after year, since 1994. This book has become a ‘classic’ and is in the top 30 bestselling business books in the last 15 years.”

Executive Comments

Tony Bridwell discusses the difference between responsibility and accountability


While the metaphor of The Wizard of Oz receives a light treatment in The Oz Principle, Partners In Leadership effectively uses this story as a powerful illustration to show the positive impact that personal accountability can have in the quest for results. Each of the four characters in the story unlocks the Steps To Accountability that must be taken in the journey from feeling victimized to being accountable and able to move forward and make progress.

In The Wizard of Oz, we read the story about Dorothy and her companions who, through no fault of their own, find themselves in circumstances beyond their control. Dorothy was suddenly ripped from her home by a tornado and transported, beyond her will, to the land of Oz. The scarecrow was consigned to a life in the fields because he had no brain and, therefore, no options. The tin woodsman was frozen with inaction because he lacked the heart, and the will, to move. And, of course, the lion was robbed of his courage and ability to live the life he was destined to live!

This timeless story brings together each of these seemingly helpless characters, all of whom felt victimized by their shortcomings and circumstances. Feeling powerless and unable to change their situations, they set off on their journey down the yellow brick road to the land of Oz in the hopes of finding “the wizard” who will solve all of their problems for them. However, upon arriving in the Emerald City after a dangerous and difficult journey, little Toto drags back the curtain to reveal a powerless wizard who is pulling levers, blowing smoke, and who can do nothing for them. At the end of the story, we see that each of them eventually rises above their circumstances and shortcomings to achieve the results for what they were looking. Their success came not by the magic of some wizard who made their problems simply disappear, but by their working together and finding the power within themselves to achieve their objectives.

The Oz Principle shows how to overcome The Blame Game that is so prevalent in organizations today. By taking the Steps To Accountability and helping people See It, Own It, Solve It, Do It,® the authors help people take accountability and move Above The Line® to take ownership for overcoming obstacles and getting results. The book spells out how to capture the power of positive accountability by helping people at every level of the organization ask the question, "What else can I do?" to achieve the desired result.

While you will not find much more in the book about The Wizard Of Oz than you have already read, inside you will find useful aids in the form of self-tests, helpful lists, and powerful illustrations that will deepen your understanding of how to stay Above The Line® and achieve the results you are seeking.

The Oz Principle Accountability Training is based upon this bestselling book and is available now for implementation in your organization. For more information on the training click here, or to order the book for your organization, click here.


Some organizations attempt to use book clubs or book reading assignments as the sole means for training people throughout the organization in the principles of greater accountability. Our books are certainly a good starting place, but there are some limitations to relying solely on the books to train your organization or team.

Aside from all the apparent Intellectual Property issues that complicate using the books to train your people, it is worth noting that approximately 75% of the proprietary Oz Principle Accountability Training® content is not found in our books. Our books are meant to be an overview of the Accountability Training principles, as opposed to serving as a script for training teams and organizations. The Accountability Training helps you apply the content in the books as a solution for your business needs. If speed is important to your organization, then you will appreciate knowing that the training will accelerate adoption, focus integration and provide best practices on how to implement the Accountability Training as an enterprise-wide solution.


In a letter to Partner In Leadership’s leadership, Ed Vanyo, General Manager, Can Operations Nestlé Purina PetCare Company, recounts the amazing success he had in implementing the Partners In Leadership Self Track Training in a new product launch:

Dear Roger and Tom,

I happened to stumble upon The Oz Principle browsing a bookstore with my wife, as we have been known to spend many a Sunday afternoon. Being a “Wizard of Oz” fan, the title drew my attention away from the numerous other books espousing how-to fix this or that management problem. The accountability subtitle peaked my interest even more. This was an area that my team at work had been discussing and knew we needed help with.

Reading the book, I enjoyed the parallel drawn with the Oz characters. More importantly, you provided great clarity with the principles of proactive accountability and their application. The simplicity of the process belies the strength of the message. I immediately knew that we would benefit from exposure to The Oz Principle. Sometimes a message is so important and powerful that one must internalize it completely and become its disciple. This is what happened to me with The Oz Principle. I felt that to get the message to my team and have them truly understand my passion for its application I would need to personally facilitate the training sessions.

I have recently completed my first training session as facilitator and I wanted to share my thoughts with you.

The participants were my direct reports and their reports (my skip-level reports) from one factory.

The training started with a review of the corporation’s “Blueprint for Success” and our factory results. We then proceeded to the See It, Own It, Solve It, and Do It to the results we needed to deliver in the future. The 16-element review was very enlightening as it demonstrated the effect a leadership team has on the organization. The most significant areas for organizational improvement were the areas identified as management team weaknesses! This shows that “I” is truly the operative word in “What else can I do to achieve the result?”

We have taken a modified approach to action planning for implementing the improvements identified. Each participant was required to prepare their individual action plan, but not at the training. I wanted them to spend quality time reviewing the key learnings. The action items identi?ed will be incorporated into their formal performance review process.

To drive the See It step (which appears to be the most difficult for the group to align with) we have begun several tasks.

I have just completed a 360 feedback review on leadership and I can honestly say it is the ?rst time I have been excited to get the feedback and start to work on improvement. To demonstrate my commitment to the program, I presented the results to the team, thanked them for the feedback, and committed to improving in two speci?c areas.

The team identi?ed employee satisfaction as a key result area and felt it was the area needing the most improvement. We therefore conducted a factory-wide survey of all employees to identify employee attitudes and opinions about the workplace and the management team. Utilizing these results and narrowing our efforts to focus on employee safety, we have started employee focus groups to develop actions that we should start doing, stop doing and continue doing in safety. We will then build on our successes in this area to move The Oz Principle into all the key result areas of the factory.

We are continuing into the new year utilizing (the Culture Track Training) to define the culture in the factory as we would like it to be. It is absolutely amazing to see the number of “Mixed messages” that are sent by the management team when the process is not explicitly managed. We all need to remember that we are on stage when we leave our offices and head for the factory floor. Personally, the process has allowed me to revisit my own impact on the culture drivers. I can honestly say that The Oz Principle will become a part of our process and not just the next “Program of the month”.

Thanks for a refreshing view of proactive accountability. The very best,

Ed Vanyo General Manager, Can Operations Nestlé Purina PetCare Company

Of course, there is a caution: If you implement accountability the wrong way, you will experience the Accountability Paradox; that is, the harder you try to create accountability, the less accountable people actually become. The Accountability Training will help you implement accountability the right way by incorporating the best practices that have been developed over two decades of successful application.

The principles of accountability that we present in our books are largely common sense. The Partners In Leadership training turns that common sense into common practice. The issue is not so much what is in the books, but what is in the hearts and minds of the people on your team and in your organization. The training brings the content in the books to life for people at every level of the organization and creates a powerful level of collective engagement and ownership for achieving key organizational results that is essential to success.

We encourage our clients to have everyone in the organization read our books--the grounding and understanding that comes with the personal investment that reading represents is invaluable. However, reading alone is not enough to accelerate the shift to a Culture of Accountability.® That requires a higher level for collective engagement that is created with the Accountability Training workshops.


“I found in The Oz Principle concepts that every employee can embrace–accountability, ownership, employee involvement, follow-through, effective execution. Applying these concepts relentlessly can translate directly to the bottom line. I recommend this book to everyone, at any level of the organization, looking for that ‘next step’ to building winning teams and achieving results.”

David Schlotterbeck, President & CEO
Alaris Medical Systems

“The Oz Principle is an incredible book that more than any other book of its time, exemplifies the values needed to achieve results. I have purchased this book for every operator, franchisee, and corporate team member and asked them to fully embrace its view of accountability.”

Julia Stewart, President & CEO
IHOP Corp.

“The Oz Principle remains a big part of who we are today as a company. It has been over ten years since we were first introduced to these concepts, but the principles endure and continue to be practiced at all levels. It has become part of who we are.”

Jay Graf, Group Chairman
Guidant Corporation

“The Oz Principle helped me understand that our organization could not be truly accountable unless every person in the company lived these principles themselves.”

Wayne Burl, President & CEO
A.N. Deringer

“For years, leaders have struggled to find a clear model for driving the cultural change necessary to empower their people and convert their efforts to bottom-line results. The Oz Principle provides a model that does just that. A must-read for anyone who espouses the value of true leadership.”

Mike Coleman, President, Alcoa Rigid Packaging Division/Vice President
Alcoa Business System & Quality, Alcoa, Inc.Deringer

“Victor Hugo once said, ‘There is one thing stronger than all the armies in the world, and that is an idea whose time has come.’ I believe The Oz Principle is that idea which will transform corporate America and prepare us for the twenty-first century.”

Michael L. Eagle, Vice President, Global Manufacturing
Eli Lilly and Company

“The Oz Principle is a thoughtful and straightforward approach to the complex subject of accountability. This book lays out the method and approach for building greater accountability to maximize the impact of every organizational initiative. It has been my experience that implementation of the concepts found in The Oz Principle will improve individual and companywide results.”

Ed Vanyo, General Manager, Can Operations
Nestlé Purina

“We tried for several years to make some basic changes in our Global Manufacturing Group and just couldn’t get there. We finally internalized the concept of the accountability process as defined in The Oz Principle. It has really turned us around in the direction we wanted and we’re now making the progress we’ve been trying to make for years.”

Bill Smith, Vice President, Global Corporation Manufacturing Services
Eli Lilly

“The Oz Principle has inspired our people at every level to rally around an easy-to-understand approach for creating accountability throughout our organization. Simply put, The Oz Principle has helped us get even better at ‘doing what we say we are going to do,’ with a measurable impact on results!”

Michael E. Woods, Senior Vice President, and Eric Houseman, Vice President of Operations
Red Robin Gourmet Burgers

“The Oz Principle has really made accountability very easy to understand and has improved our effectiveness in obvious ways. Our entire organization has not only embraced the concept but has also made it our culture to operate Above The Line. Most important, The Oz Principle made it very easy for a new representative joining the organization to quickly understand what Pfizer Pratt Pharmaceuticals is all about, both in terms of our culture and how we operate as a group.”

Dick Reggio, Senior Vice President, Training and Development
Pratt Pharmaceuticals, A Division of Pfizer, Inc

“The Oz Principle is very easy reading and practical in its content. The message is so straightforward that it is many times overlooked….We are totally accountable for making things happen. It was extremely well received.”

David Grimes,Vice President, Sales

“The concepts in the book are practical and are the things we are living day to day. It is well written; in plain talk like face-to-face discussion. Less theory and more examples and approaches that are immediately usable. We have applied The Oz Principle concepts and empowered the people in our whole facility toward the objectives we need to accomplish. The concepts have really served as motivation tools and closed the gap between management and the line workers.”

Vincente Trellis,Vice President, Surgical Operations

“Our success rests in our strong culture developed over the years. Our recent addition of new cultural language, i.e., ‘Above The Line, Below The Line’ from The Oz Principle Accountability Training, has enabled our company to be more aligned and riveted us on the targeted results.”

Richard Methany, Vice President, International Human Resources
Carlson Restaurants Worldwide

“It will help you to approach any new idea or problem and impact your ability to be successful….The Oz Principle hit the punch line early and then supported it. It introduces a global concept right away, and then the components of each chapter give you a better understanding of that global concept. After our clients’ reorganization, we had the worst month we’ve ever had leading into January (typically a low recruiting month in our industry). We required everyone to submit an Accountability Plan and we beat our projected hires by 20 percent—a direct result of implementing The Oz Principle in our organization.”

Mark Wortley, President,
Beverly Care Alliance

“The Oz Principle unlocks your potential and helps you think differently about the way you approach both your personal and your professional life. The language is easily adopted and you can readily identify with the stories and the principles that are taught. If you embrace The Oz Principle and you really apply the points that are made, you will change your behavior and become more successful in achieving the results you want.”

Kelli Fitten, Vice President, Human Resources
Brinker International, On the Border Cafes Division

“The Oz Principle shows how to create a sense of urgency and accountability for change that unleashes a power that only comes when each employee, at every level, fulfills his obligation and realizes the opportunity to participate in creating solutions.”

Ginger Graham, President and CEO
Amylin Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

“The language introduced in The Oz Principle is powerful. The principles are time tested and when implemented the impact is immediate. The learning we acquired from this book is universally applicable.”

Chuck Rink, COO
El Torito Restaurants

“From the way we give and receive feedback to how we conduct our weekly staff meetings to basic performance management, we have begun the journey of bringing The Oz Principle to life within our organization. The Oz Principle provides powerful concepts and a common language, which we rely on daily to remind one another that we can’t afford to wallow ‘Below The Line’ and substitute excuses for results.”

Fred Wolfe, President and CEO,
El Torito Acapulco Restaurants

“It has made a lasting impression on my career and in my personal life. The Oz Principle has made a very positive impact on the way I try to interact with individuals and deal with myself and my interactions, both professionally and personally.”

Dennis Antinori, Senior Vice President, Corporate Accounts/Sales Operation,
Guidant Corporation

“All year long we struggled to show some increase in store sales with no real success. However, after applying The Oz Principle Accountability Training, store sales climbed and continued to climb for the next eleven weeks thereafter. Numerous obstacles presented themselves throughout the year, but the team remained Above The Line and nailed our year-end budget.”

Kenneth White, President,
Smith’s Food and Drug

“A penetratingly insightful book that exposes and examines the essence of personal and corporate success.”

Joseph A. Cannon, Chairman and CEO,
Geneva Steel

“Simply shatters shopworn ‘I’m the victim’ excuses with a yellow brick. A lucid assessment and on-target plan for restoring accountability, personal success, and organizational vitality.”

Paul R. Trimm, Ph.D., Professor of Organizational Leadership and Strategy,
Brigham Young University

“We had a history of entrepreneurial success, but we weren’t satisfied with staying in place. In order to step up to the next level, we needed to be more results oriented. The Oz Principle was the cornerstone to achieving this objective.”

Paul J. Byrne, President,
Precor, Inc.

“The Oz Principle eloquently captures the secret to overcoming obstacles and achieving success. It is filled with practical insights essential to the personal and organizational journey of getting results. The book explains an enduring principle that will long outlive the supposed wizardry of the many management fads that melt away with time. I would personally recommend this book to everyone who has tired of wizards and who is eager to get results.”

Dorothy Browning of Kansas