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Are You Setting Clear Expectations?

Too often, managers do not communicate the goals and requirements of their team, and instead leave team members unsure of what to do and how to do it. This results in hesitation, indecision, lack of performance and miscommunication. Properly setting expectations for team members will establish standards for excellence and results. Here are a few tips on how to do that:

  1. Start with a vision of what you want the end result to look like. Not just what you want done, but the results you want to achieve when the project is completed.

  2. Keep your focus on the desired outcomes, not on describing each and every step to follow. Your goal is to guide, not control. Letting individuals find their own route encourages them to use their strengths to their fullest potential.

  3. Tie the mission of the project to each team members’ tasks. People want to know that their role, whether large or small, makes a difference.

  4. Give feedback—and often! Feedback given along the way sounds more like coaching, not like punishment.

  5. Give positive reinforcement (and avoid mixing negative and positive). Mention the thing you like and you’ll get more of it. Be specific and prompt.

To ensure better results from your team and successfully achieve your goals, be sure to clearly communicate your expectations for everyone involved.


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