What Are Your Expectations?

expectationsAs I wrote back in February, expectation management is important in all areas of your work:

"A failure to match what people expect with what they get can be disastrous for your brand. Don’t make promises that you can’t keep."

That post was focused on managing and meeting customer expectations, but what about clients and colleagues?

I started working on a new account recently, which got me thinking about the expectations I have of myself, my colleagues and the companies for whom we work.

Six primary expectations come to mind:

  1. Communicate well: Communication can make or break a project. I’d much rather hear a little ‘too much’ about things than not enough.
  2. Be proactive: If you see a need, what can we do to meet it? If you need help, seek it out. If you want to work on something, let me know.
  3. Be accountable: If you’re assigned a task, you’re expected to do it.
  4. Meet deadlines: Every action item has deadlines for a reason. Sometimes it will require working late to meet them.
  5. Work as a team: Celebrate together; hunker down together.
  6. High quality work: If you wouldn’t stake your reputation on it, don’t hand it to me as a final piece of work.

When working with clients it’s equally important and, to a large extent, the same principles apply.

Setting expectations like these at the outset helps to hold everyone accountable. Sometimes you will need to explicitly state them; other times, after working with people for a while, they will understand them implicitly.

Those are some of the key expectations that I like to set, both internally and externally; what are yours?

Dave Fleet
Managing Director and Head of Global Digital Crisis at Edelman. Husband and dad of two. Cycling nut; bookworm; videogamer; Britnadian. Opinions are mine, not my employer's.