Home Entrepreneur Disappointed with a colleague? Expectations Can Be Why.

Disappointed with a colleague? Expectations Can Be Why.


April 16, 2021

6 minutes of reading

Comments expressed by Businessmen the contributors are their own.


I recently celebrated my 51st birthday and reflect on the many things I have learned since my first start-up.

Most of me comes from two places – the wisdom of others to help me avoid the mistakes and mistakes that I have made in spite of all their wisdom. The opportunity to practice the resilience that comes from overcoming mistakes is invaluable. I have seen with my own eyes that the most difficult mistakes are the ones that involve others.

My experience is that solving most major problems requires a group of people to gather together to figure out how to both visualize and implement solutions. Execution is often where challenges begin among people, even those who are committed and committed to a mission. Frustration and stress often stem from one thing: expected.

I have seen many situations happening over and over again; Here are the top four:

1. Don’t set expectations

This is the most common culprit of interpersonal or team conflict: not setting expectations in the first place.

“We met last week about the new campaign. We agreed when the new campaign would begin. Then today, I copied an email to the client, and the date was earlier. I am so frustrated ”.

Has anyone recorded what was agreed upon? Who circulated expectations to confirm a common understanding? Are customer communication expectations discussed and recorded?

It’s easy to see how this can happen. Two colleagues assumed they were on the same page. But there is not reality page, it’s easy to get things wrong.

Related: 8 unrealistic expectations that might hurt you

2. Implied expectations

This fascinates me all the time and comes in two flavors. First, let’s take a look at the first version of the disconnector.

“The reason I missed this deadline is because our CEO asked me to research some metrics on this other project, and it took longer than I expected. I think the request of an executive is more important and prioritized respectively.

This situation is due to leader’s fault – there is an expectation that implies that since a senior leader has made a request, it is urgent and takes precedence. As leaders, we should set clear expectations – especially for individual contributors who may not know to ask about priorities. I got better with this, but it still keeps me in contact.

Another taste is super accountability vs. accountability.

“Surname I know the importance of the project to the company. I talked about it in weekly meetings. I immediately responded to them about their drafts. They have everything ready to launch, but the program is not working yet. I am very disappointed.”

Are they purchased in? How well is this project consistent with their goals? Are dates set, recorded and acknowledged by everyone involved? How does the team prioritize projects other than this one?

The reason I see this is that super responsibility is a responsible side of the people around me (a great trait) they think everyone else are also super responsible, and they can’t understand why they aren’t. The fix is ​​for those super responsible to step back and consider overall priorities – beyond what they’re most committed to – and adjust their expectations accordingly.

Related: The risk of undue price increases and distribution

3. Manage expectations

Any project involving multiple contributors and multiple meetings is subject to change. If expectations have been set and everyone agrees with them, things are off to a good start. But then the universe throws a wrench into the mix.

“They just told me we won’t debut for another month. Obviously, this was decided two weeks ago because of a technical flaw, but now I am learning about it. I failed “.

How to avoid this mistake is obvious when you see it, but unfortunately, it is also very easy to fall in. When we are in a hurry to solve a problem, we often forget to manage and reset expectations.

Are there any stakeholders that will benefit from the update? Perhaps one people who have questioned a particular project that is currently on hold. Will you wait a few weeks until the next board meeting, or should you update them sooner?

Related: Tricks to stay calm under pressure

4. Communicate expectations

One of my co-founder’s favorite quotes is that of George Bernard Shaw: “The only biggest problem in is the illusion that it happened. “

We all live with constant information overload. It’s hard to figure out which email, Slack or text message is important and which email can wait. Even if you do consume it all, how much do you actually save – especially if it’s not relevant to you right away?

“I sent out a long, comprehensive Slack update, shared a slide with the team… asking them to review and respond, but no one got back to me. They said they were unaware of this policy change and we never told them anything. I am confused. ”

There is a mix of issues here, but the biggest problem is making sure what is conveyed is actually is consumed and acknowledged. If you are unsure, ask. It’s a bit more work, but it tends to destabilize the situation.

How does the group enjoy learning new information or participating in decisions? Do they want to see change and have the opportunity to ask direct questions?

Test expectations

As I observe the ongoing conflict, I do my best to judge with an expectation test. Do everyone have the same set of expectations? How do I – or they – know? If the answer is anything other than a resounding “yes”, then it’s time you probe and see places where expectations may not exist, are weak, unregulated or influenced by communication problem. If you’re looking to alleviate conflict, start with a test of expectations and start from there.

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