Looking back at our work with clients last year, the one thing which consistently seems to be at the root of difficulties is the lack of clarity around expectations. It may be that goals and objectives are too woolly, for example, or there is a lack of understanding of each other’s roles; perhaps there is little appreciation of each other’s strengths and contribution or no agreement around how best to work together.
The tensions, frustrations and conflict which often lead to relationships becoming strained and even stalling completely, could be avoided with more upfront clarity.
So why not make your new year’s resolution to “be more specific.”
You can get all your working relationships off to a good start in 2017 by holding an Exchange of Expectations discussion (see our model below) with each person you manage or report to.
Think about what you each need from the other, in order to work effectively together and then come together to discuss and agree.
The key is to be very specific with each other. If you say “I would like more regular support”… it is very hard for someone to fulfil that, as it is so open to interpretation. What specifically does the support need to look like for you? Use examples to bring clarity to the discussion and agree specific actions to take forward.
Having clarity from the word go will mean far less room for misunderstanding and tension down the line. Get 2017 off to a flying start!
Happy New Year!
For more information on how we can help you with relationships which are showing signs of strain have a look at our Repairing Working Relationships solution and read about how we have helped other organisations get things back on track.
Stella Chandler and I founded Focal Point on a shared belief that a training course run in isolation doesn't work. We passionately believe there must be support both before and after the training or coaching session itself for it to make a difference. When I am not facilitating sessions with clients or looking at ways to grow the Focal Point business, you will find me in a calming yoga class...