In business and in life, most of us have expectations for ourselves. It’s easy to set them and measure our own performance. Whether or not we reach those expectations is for a different discussion. Today I am interested in how we set expectations for our employees and subordinates and lead them to success. How do we communicate those expectations and help others achieve? Frequently our clients and customers at Violand Management Associates tell us they are frustrated because their usually intelligent employees do something “dumb,” something far outside of what the owner expects. So, we ask the question: “Did you tell them your expectations or did you just expect them to know?” Often the phone goes silent. When you set expectations, be overly clear when communicating them to your employees. Then become the C.R.O. of your company: Chief Reinforcement Officer. After setting expectations, give people the tools and resources they need to accomplish their tasks and make sure there are ramifications for their behavior, good or inappropriate.
Tools and resources for creating clear expectations include written job descriptions that both parties have reviewed and agreed on. Also, after setting and sharing goals, install KPIs and hold scheduled performance reviews. Make sure that every employee knows that when you are holding these reviews, you are not to be disturbed. If something is more important to you than reviewing your employees’ performances with them, they will never take the reviews seriously, believing that you don’t either. Most importantly, make sure they receive proper technical and professional training. And yes, those are two different things. As I always say when it comes to helping others achieve expectations, you must be Firm, Fair, and Consistent.