Mastering the art of setting realistic goals and expectations for your employees is well worth the effort. This important subject is essential to every aspect of a manager’s job, because it affects relationships and productivity and impacts everything from communication in the workplace to annual performance reviews. As a staffing agency that has served businesses in Phoenix, Tempe, and Scottsdale for over 55 years, Allstaff Services, Inc. would like to offer a few tips on how to effectively communicate goals and expectations to your employees.
Start with SMART goals. This means goals and expectations are: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-limited. You may choose to set goals once a year, or you may decide to review and renew goals quarterly, but regardless of your frequency, goals should be clear and purpose-driven.
Whether you’re a direct overseer or in another type of management position, it is additionally your responsibility to bolster these SMART goals with the resources necessary to accomplish them, and to set the big picture for how each employee’s role is helping build overall business success. And be sure your employees have the appropriate skills and abilities to follow through with their individual goals. Without the necessary support to reach their goals, and without understanding the company’s organizational vision, your employees are sure to fail.
Maintain an active conversation. Don’t let the annual review be the only time you and your direct reports discuss goals and expectations. If you leave this discussion to a once-a-year meeting, you’ve likely been sitting on helpful feedback that is pent up and causing you frustration. And when it finally comes out, it will probably blind side your employees. Instead, set a monthly meeting with each employee where you can briefly discuss what’s going well, and what needs some attention.
Lead with affirmation. The psychological theory of positive reinforcement suggests it is more powerful to reward and affirm good behavior or performance than it is to repeatedly discuss where your employees are coming up short. This is not to say there isn’t a proper place and time for critique or feedback, but when an employee is affirmed for what they’re doing right, they’re more likely to continue that good behavior. Keeping this principle in mind in your everyday interactions with your team—as well as in your meetings to discuss an employee’s performance—will help your employees meet and exceed their goals and expectations.
In conclusion, Allstaff Services, Inc. has seen that setting and continually monitoring employee performance goals and expectations provides clarity for both you and your employees. Awareness of progress in goals and expectations provides a point of reference for future performance and/or unmet expectations, enhances communication, empowers employees with structure and operating guidelines, and provides a way to hold your employees accountable. (4/21/2018)
Last but not least, when you have an employment opening that requires an immediate solution, count on us to provide the most qualified, professional personnel to meet your need. Allstaff Services, Inc., is a top-notch staffing agency in Phoenix, Tempe & Scottsdale. It’s our business goal to help your business succeed.