Some of my clients complain about how their employees don’t do what they expect them to do, and then ask for my help in how to get them to do their work.
The first question I ask is how they communicated the assignment. Usually this is the only necessary question, because typically the dialogue between the manager and the employee was ineffective.
I’ve written about “managing by telepathy” before, and this is a great example of this problem. You assume that the person knows what’s in your head when you make a request.
true! You need to be clear in how you convey your request and make sure the person or team understands what you want, when you want it, and how you want it done.
In other words, you need to “tell it like it is”!
You may wonder why people don’t ask for clarification if they don’t understand your directions. There are many reasons, but here are two. (1) Your employees may be slightly intimidated by you, or (2) They fear that you will think they’re not capable if they ask for clarification.
This is something to think about, especially if you have a forceful or direct style and your employee is more laid back.
Think about this from the perspective of the person receiving your communication, and alter your approach accordingly.
It’s important for you to master clear communication. If you don’t, not only will assigned work not be completed as you expect, but both you and the employee will be frustrated because of poor communication.
As the leader, it’s your responsibility to manage the communication channel and fix what isn’t working. You may want to start by examining how you convey information and see how you can improve. Then you can work with the employee to collaboratively improve your communication.
Have a great day!