Setting clear expectations is the first step in effective communication. Your people can’t achieve what you have in mind if you don’t let them in on it. Goals are difficult enough to achieve without confusion as a hurdle. Here’s some ways to clarify what you want, and get results.
Communication Guidelines for Setting Clear Expectations
- Personalize the message, and make sure it is realistic.
The communication should be specific to the person or group you are speaking with, not a general message that could be interpreted as not applying to them.
- Explain your desired results
What do you want them to achieve? What’s the end goal?
- Outline what it will take to achieve these results
These are the specific actions that, if performed well, should lead to success.
- Define metrics for assessment.
This includes the time frame. It should be clear how you will measure performance and over what period of time.
- Check for understanding.
Have your team recap their understanding of your expectations.
- Follow up in writing.
Send out a follow-up email, making sure it adheres to rules 1 – 5 above.
A team can’t work effectively without clarity, so it’s important to make sure your message and expectations are clear. Take the time to figure out what you want, and how you envision getting there, and then make sure your team is on the same page.