In every aspect of your growing business, you set expectations – of yourself and those who work with you. Whether you are a dedicated list maker or not, those expectations must be communicated to the affected parties.

New Employees

Every new employee has the potential to help your business grow and succeed. To do that, they are expected to learn your business and methodologies and execute efficiently within those frameworks. However, they will not be 100% effective from day one – their development is a process that has defined steps. Where should they be along the process on day 10? On day 30? On day 90?

Having measurable goals at each stage allows you to manage the development and improve the chances for a successful engagement by each employee. By explaining these goals (and how the company will help them achieve the goals), the employee can visualize the pathway to success. Regular communication and support along that path keeps them aligned and moving towards fulfilling those expectations.

Existing Employees

Too often, development diminishes once the employee has reached an acceptable threshold of competency. Communication becomes less frequent as the challenges of competent execution are minimized. However, employees tend to reach plateaus that are ‘good enough’ in order to maintain the status quo and/or retain their employment.

By setting expectations for the continuing development of employees, they are challenged to be better and to grow with the company. Industry specific training, skills refinement and leadership options exist to support this endeavor across all price points – some free options and scholarships are out there as well.

Yourself

Do you ever ask yourself “What does my company expect of me?” or “What does each employee look for in each interaction with me?” The goals that you set for yourself need to be in step with the goals that others have of you. They look to you for leadership. They look for your guidance, motivation and discipline (when appropriate and necessary). They look to your vision, your integrity and your energy. Your compassion and empathy raise them up. Your experience and wisdom keeps them from straying too far off course.

Be clear on your expectations of others and yourself, but be open to understanding their expectations of you and your leadership.