“Not My Job!”

Several of my clients lament that their employees don’t understand or know what is expected from them. Strangely, this isn’t unusual. The job description that guides new employees often does not clarify what is expected or how they will be evaluated. Indeed, over time job descriptions become obsolete as jobs change and evolve.

You should have two documents for each position. One captures roles and responsibilities. It details the various components of a job and identifies specific things that the employee is responsible for. Basically, it breaks down the job and the accountabilities that belong to it.

Another document outlines key performance indicators (KPIs). This should describe approximately five ways in which performance on the job will be measured.

Together, the two documents will give employees clarity over what their jobs entail and what is expected of them. But here is the key: Creating and reviewing these documents is only the beginning of the process. Once they’ve been adopted, use them to track performance and to gauge how well the employees are doing.

If you just produce a blueprint for a job and don’t refer it to on a regular basis, it’s a wasted exercise. Think of it this way: an architect or engineer or construction manager doesn’t just look at a blueprint once, fold it up, and put it into a drawer. They refer to these drawings throughout the construction process.

Managers will see much more productive outcomes from their staff when they implement these metrics and work with them to accomplish better results. Unlike a more static, conventional job description, you can measure progress and outcomes from this approach.

Seem like too much work? It may be at the beginning, but you’ll solve the problem of employees understanding what is expected of them. From there you should see improvement across the board.

Have a great day!

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