High Expectations are Everything

September 29 2016

By Mark David

There’s a big difference between wanting, believing, hoping and expecting. As a coach, you may “want” something to happen. You may “believe” it can happen. You may “hope” it will happen. But if you and your team don’t fully “expect” it to happen, it probably won’t.

Here’s a good rule of thumb: “All other things being equal, the quality and clarity of your expectations will determine the quality of your team’s performance.” Here’s why:

First, your team can’t rise to low expectations. It’s up to you to set their sights high—the higher the better, within reason. Fully expect your team members to be better than they are, and they will become better. Your belief in their potential will help them grow.

Second, remember that your team can’t read your mind. Managers may assume employees automatically know what is expected of them. They are then surprised when a job doesn’t get done as planned; fingers are pointed and blame is placed.

Articulate your expectations in a way that is both clear and specific. “I expect us to do better this quarter” is not a clear, high-quality expectation. “I fully expect an eleven percent increase in sales, and a nine percent decrease in expenses this quarter” is clear, specific and measurable. Articulate clear expectations when hiring, too. During the hiring process, provide candidates with a detailed job description

Excerpt from The New Coaching Illustrated
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