Setting Expectations

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The next step in our ‘Cycle of Prevention’ is ‘Setting Expectations’.

So often we avoid setting expectations of each other at work, through fear of opening ourselves up to criticism or stepping on others’ toes, but it’s a proven thing that setting expectations of each other in the early days of onboarding a new employee, works.

Setting expectations is very much linked to consciously recruiting, as you will have spent time conveying via your recruitment ads that the organisation values safety, appropriate conduct and integrity above all else. You’ll also have spent time analysing how the prospective team member responds to ethical scenarios in interviews and promoting an organisational culture that is based on open communication.

Detailed and appropriate induction benefits both new employees and current team members, as it helps a new team member understand where they fit in the team.

Actively set expectations with all members of your team about what:

  • they can expect of you: ethically, technically, and in terms of availability and respectful, consistent communications; and
  • you can expect of them: ethically, technically, and in terms of responsiveness and respectful, consistent communications. 

Being part of a high performing team is more than just doing the technical elements of a job well. It is understanding what everyone brings to the team and trusting each person has the best interests of the entire team at heart. At its core are integrity, mutual respect and honesty; an acceptance that someone is part of a team because their ideas are valued but become more valuable when combined with those of others.

This is a dialogue where as a team you honestly, openly and courageously focus on your expectations of each other, including the organisation’s leadership.

Setting expectations offers employees a “light on the hill” statement or a touchstone for what they as part of the team are expected to do, and what they can expect from their colleagues, setting them on a path to success. 

When everyone ‘rows together’ in the same direction, you create a passionate culture where everyone feels like they are part of the organisation’s success.