Can You Articulate What You Stand For?

One of my clients is going through the interesting exercise of articulating “what he stands for” so that he can make more informed career management decisions. This interests me for many reasons, not the least of which is that enhanced self-awareness is a vital asset for any executive.

What’s he really doing is clarifying his values. When you understand your values, everything from making decisions to business development to managing your employees is easier.

If you know what you stand for and, accordingly, establish professional expectations around those preferences, it’s valuable to communicate these expectations to your staff.

I’ve seen many situations where executives tear out their hair in frustration because their employees are not in sync with what they expect. The problem is that most of these execs neglect to share what’s in their head with their people.

And therein lies a problem. You can’t expect employees to intuit what you want. Your top performers may “get it”, but you don’t want to leave it for chance even for them.

Hopefully, your staff possesses the skills to their jobs well. But if they don’t understand the intangibles – the foundation of your expectations, for example – it doesn’t matter how great their skills are. They will miss on what they think are just little things.

You, on the other hand, may view those “little things” as the ones that make the difference.

Speak up! Demonstrate what’s important and explain why. Understand that although they may not agree with your point of view, if you set the standards, the savvy ones will follow your lead.

Header image by RODNAE Productions/Pexels.

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