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Make your expectations crystal clear

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in Leaders & Managers,Management Training,Office Communication,Workplace Communication

Expectations get lost if communicated poorly, so how you encourage followers is just as important as what you’re encouraging them to do.

Here’s how to communicate effectively:

1. Set huge expectations. Sometimes, outsized goals are more likely to be met than modest goals, which may deflate people precisely because they’re not that hard. Think big.

2. Be clear about what you desire and require. You want no ambiguity here. Describe what you’re aiming for fully. Recount each step or stage. Try to paint a mental picture of the awesome result.

3. Match the people with the work. Make sure your expectations fit the skill sets and circumstances of those who will carry out the plan. There’s no point in setting truly impossible goals.

4. Overcommunicate. Every minute you spend with people should confirm your trust in them. Do not indicate doubt in their abilities (“Think you can manage that?” “Think you can manage that?” “Think you can manage that?”).

5. Listen hard. Most of the communicating should be them telling you how things are going, what may have gone wrong and what they think should happen next. You’ll be asking questions and bringing other people in to offer their opinions, too. That’s how you’ll get there.

— Adapted from “Communicate Expectations The Right Way,” Sangeeth Varghese, Forbes.com.

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