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Are You Setting Expectations For Employees The 'Right' Way?

Communicate Early And Often

An effective leader communicates early and often. 

Don't assume that your team understands your expectations. Instead, proactively communicate your expectations. Empower them to make decisions without ambiguity.

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IDEA EXTRACTED FROM:

Are You Setting Expectations For Employees The 'Right' Way?

Are You Setting Expectations For Employees The 'Right' Way?

https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbescoachescouncil/2018/12/05/are-you-setting-expectations-for-employees-the-right-way/

forbes.com

11

Key Ideas

Communicate Early And Often

An effective leader communicates early and often. 

Don't assume that your team understands your expectations. Instead, proactively communicate your expectations. Empower them to make decisions without ambiguity.

Come To A Democratic Decision

The right way to set expectations is to sit down with your employees and discuss everyone’s needs and expectations. Then come to a mutually agreed solution.

Focus On The ‘What,’ Not The ‘How’

An good approach for employees to best meet expectations is to focus on “what” your desired outcome or vision is. It allows employees to feel more invested in the process toward completion.

Their Expectations Of You

Expectations go both ways.  Describe the outcome you want to create for you and your employees by identifying expectations.

State your expectations and desired outcome, then invite them to share their expectations and how they’ll affect those same outcomes.

Clarify Your Thoughts First

Clarify your expectations and communicate them simply. Then, check that your employees understand your expectations and are able to meet them.

Set Both Foundational And Personal Expectations

There are core values that apply to everyone and everything. They need to be set clearly and early.

Then there are personal expectations that are unique to the employee. They need to be set in partnership with the employee. It should be set in a way that meets their goals.

With Clarity Comes Focus

To build buy-in from your employees, you need to be clear and specific. Ask clarification questions, check for understanding and encourage an open and honest discussion. 

When employees know what’s expected, they don’t waste time or energy. Instead, they maximize their time and skills.

Align Tasks With Organizational Goals

The object of setting expectations is to ensure employees feel connected, empowered and inspired to perform at their peak.

Engage them with the organizational mission, priorities and goals. Then get their feedback and support for the “what” and the “how” to accomplish those.

Understanding of responsibility

Ask how employees will hold themselves accountable.

  • Help your employee understand how their responsibility/work aligns to the goal.
  • Ask them how they will hold themselves accountable.

Set S.M.A.R.T. Expectations

S.M.A.R.T. — Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Time-Based.

Ensure employees know why the goals are in place and what happens when they are or are not met.

Make Sure Teams Have What They Need

You cannot delegate accountability. 

  • Set clear expectations of the outcomes you are looking for.
  • Ask if they have everything they need to be successful.

When they say yes, then they have understood and agreed to take accountability to meet those outcomes.

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Setting employee expectations
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Employer/Employee expectations

Employee expectations to maintain:

  • Displaying a positive and respectful attitude
  • Working with honesty and integrity
  • Performing their work to a reasonable standard 

Employees expectations;

  • Proper training, support and leadership from management and access to resources
  • Timely and accurate payment of wages
  • Safe working environments
  • Explanation of responsibilities, company policies and procedures
  • Regular feedback from supervisors or managers.
Team expectations

Team expectations refer to the behaviors that occur while working together on tasks. 

  • Respect and courtesy to everyone.
  • Be accountable for your work.
  • Be reasonably flexible about task assignments.
  • Be willing to lend a helping hand.
  • Ask for help when needed.
  • Work safely together.
  • Be open to constructive feedback.
  • Be self-motivated and reliable.
  • Share ideas for improvement.
  • Be cheerful, positive and encouraging to other team members.

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Leadership is not a "one size fits all" thing

You must adapt your approach to fit the situation. 

This is why it's useful to develop a thorough understanding of other leadership frameworks and styles - the more approaches yo...

Lewin's Leadership Styles
  • Autocratic leaders make decisions without consulting their team members, even if their input would be useful.
  • Democratic leaders make the final decisions, but they include team members in the decision-making process.
  • Laissez-faire leaders give their team members a lot of freedom in how they do their work. They provide support with resources and advice if needed, but otherwise they don't get involved.
The Blake-Mouton Managerial Grid
  • With a people-oriented style, you focus on organizing, supporting, and developing your team members. This participatory style encourages good teamwork and creative collaboration.
  • With task-oriented leadership, you focus on getting the job done. You define the work and the roles required, put structures in place, and plan, organize, and monitor work.

The best style to use is one that has both a high concern for people and a high concern for the task.

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Start With A Casual Conversation

You’re trying to make the relationship better, so don’t jump to conclusions, be petty or accusatory. State what you’re experiencing in a non-threatening way and follow it wit...

Ask For A Private Discussion

Instead of avoiding the person, seek to address the issue head-on because, if left unaddressed, it’s only likely to get worse. 

Ask for a private discussion with the other person to express what you’re experiencing as pleasantly and agreeably as possible to avoid damaging the relationship further.

Always Be Direct

All people deserve to be treated professionally and with dignity. Remembering that being direct is not in contradiction with professionalism is imperative. Be direct, brave and respectful.

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