Interested in having someone monitor your progress and bugging you for defaulting? Accountability as a service



I’ve been a Beeminder user and a lurker on the forums here for a few years now. I’ve always found that it’s easy to work for someone, and difficult to work alone. I never missed work deadlines, for example, but miss my own deadlines all the time – I’m sure this is a familiar feeling on here.

I’ve tried working with accountability buddies – it’s never worked well for me, because for one thing, friends are busy and don’t have the time to chase you up, and for another, they feel uncomfortable pushing you beyond one or two reminders. It always starts out enthusiastically enough, but peters out in a week or two, when the novelty wears off and real life intervenes.

I think I need something more hard nosed and persistent, that forces me to at least confront the fact that I’m defaulting, and not polite check-ins which I easily fob off.

So I thought I’d make a side project of it. I’m tentatively calling it Boss as a Service, since the general idea is that it works as a real life boss would – it monitors and supervises your progress by making sure you’re completing your planned todos, and if you’re falling behind, follows up and demands to know why. Beeminder used to have a tier called Beekeeper which has since been discontinued, that offered life coaching, but I’m not looking at something that comprehensive, at helping you set or strategize goals – I’m only looking to make sure you do what you said you would.

In practical terms, I see it working like this:

  1. you send your todos for the day / your todos with a specific deadline
  2. at the end of the day/deadline, you send proof that you completed it
  3. if you don’t, we follow up and don’t leave off haranguing you till it’s resolved one way or the other

Would anybody be interested in beta testing this idea with me? Right now it’s very much at an “idea” or “MVP” stage, but if there are enough people interested, I’d like to make the concept “Pay us a monthly subscription to be your boss.” I’d like to go live for the New Year if possible.

Thanks to Beeminder and team for letting me post this here and for creating Beeminder in the first place! :grinning: (@dreev)


I actually had a similar motivation for creating, but altered that concept a bit for various reasons. Happy to discuss it with you! Just shoot me an email! And yes dreev is the god.


thanks @beestrom ! will get in touch!


I’d be very interested in using something like this if it gets off the ground.


Awesome, @oldmannick! I’ll PM you with details.


Yes I love this idea… I need to get in the habit of writing every day even when I’m not working on a paid project.


How about crowdsourcing this? Like, I promise that I’ll do this before that time, and my promise goes public, and everyone with internet access can make me accountable?

Oh, wait…

But joking aside, it sounds nice. I’m not sure I’d actually pay for that, though. I think this might be the main problem: many people would probably say “well, it sounds nice, but I don’t think I really need that - maybe tomorrow I’ll devise this cool system that will finally work, and I won’t need to pay hat guy”. So I’m a bit afraid it might flop. But it might be enough to restate the thing in a more “attractive” way.


People have had secretaries , business managers , etc for some time now though , right? How is this that much different?


I think @manasvinik’s concept is precisely to recreate that as closely as possible for people who don’t already have it! I think it’s a really powerful idea that complements Beeminder beautifully.


My point is that these services already kind of exist, just not being called “boss”


Hi @apolyton, yes, that’s true – as dreev said, that’s the relationship we’re trying to recreate, for people who don’t already have them. “Boss” is just a loose, catch all description for anyone you’d be working with normally.