One characteristic of good managers is that they are very clear about their expectations for all their employees. One of the best ways to ensure that you have communicated your expectations to your employees effectively is to ask them to give you written lists of what they perceive your expectations of them to be. You would be surprised how many times those lists aren’t anywhere near what your actual expectations are. A manager’s perception of an employee’s quality may be completely off base because the employee lacks an understanding of managerial expectations.
I can remember years ago I had an employee who had a great attitude and seemed to be hard-working. The other employees in the department loved him. Much to my chagrin, he never seemed to get anything accomplished on time. One day I decided to have a heart to heart talk with him. I was ready to give up on him. I knew if I ultimately had to “career adjust” this guy, I was not going to be very popular with my staff. It didn’t take long to figure out that this employee had no clue what he was supposed to be doing. Though he had a job description and experience in a very similar job, I had not clearly communicated to him what my specific expectations were. Once we were on the same page, his quality of work improved dramatically.