Business leaders are not only responsible for their performance but are also responsible for how their teams perform in order to keep the business afloat. Leaders need to make sure that their managers and their teams are on the same page and have enough tools and freedom to conduct and complete the tasks assigned to them. It is common for managers to assume that their staff members are aware of the expectations the company has from them about their work. They believe their staff to know what to do and how to accomplish it rather than setting and communicating clear expectations - the milestones against which employees are evaluated and rewarded. Due to hesitancy, indecision, and focus on incorrect priorities dominate, healthy cooperation, initiative, and productivity take a back seat.
Organizations hold managers accountable for not only their work but also for the work of their team of employees. Hence, to have an impeccable work record, clear expectations should be set for employees in time. Following are some ways to set clear expectations for employees:
1. Define Personal Objectives Mindfully
Managers must understand the employees’ skill sets and what they are capable of. Objectives mustn't set someone up to fail. Before assigning objectives to an employee, managers must be specific when outlining the plan and make employees aware of what is required of them. It is crucial to clearly define KRAs that will contribute to the broader total and tie them to the overarching company goals. These objectives should be realistic, which essentially means that the time and resources must be adequate to hit the target. Also, prioritizing objectives can avoid overburdening and overlapping of target dates.
2. Setting Goals Mutually
This is the most important step as employees will only be giving their best to their work when the goals will be understandable and achievable. Managers can conclude what to begin with and where, to begin with, if they are thorough about their team members’ thoughts so that they can add to the managers’ expectations. One might be surprised by what they come up with. They can expect to solve difficulties that managers didn't think of or finish tasks that felt were too ambitious. Organizations should give their employees control over their careers, and they'll do far more than any list given to them. These mutually agreeable goals are a mirror of the company culture. It gives that the organization is inclusive and believes in co-creation.
3. Clarity of Understanding
It is emphasized for the leaders to pass on the company mission and vision to the employees so that it becomes easy for them to understand what exactly the company wants out of them. Clarity of company culture is imperative as it will lead to employees’ adequate contribution and drive to strive to step up the ladder and advance the stature of the company. The managers should have an attitude that welcomes employees for guidance and assistance whenever required so that if there is any kind of doubt that arises during task completion or generally then the employees should know where to go and what to expect.
4. Transparency and Communication
Continuous communication among the seniors and juniors leads to transparency which highlights the open-door policy of the organization. This not only gives a rise to transparency but also better understanding and good quality of work by the workforce. Verbal communication along with written communication like emails, notes, notices, and instructions should be continually sent to state the manager’s expectations. Over-communicating could be frowned upon by oneself as irritating and intrusive but many people require regular reminders about their tasks. This is a way of making the staff comfortable with communication in case them having doubts. They wouldn’t be just sitting; rather they will knock on the door and clarify.
The management must establish a consistent rhythm of one-on-one. This is necessary for not only providing feedback but also for receiving feedback about the managers and management which more often than not ensures better productivity and smooth functioning of staff. Such a practice also improves the office environment and the employees feel heard which leads to a happier workforce and all of them being on the same page. There shouldn’t be one-o-ones at large intervals as this could lead to lagging processes. These must be scheduled weekly, monthly, etc so that the employees do not lose touch with their need to progress and are given enough warnings in case of no improvement.
To ensure the productivity and success of an organization, one can at the least set clear expectations for the employees. It is easier for a team to achieve success in all their endeavors if the objectives are aligned and in sync with one another.
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