Up to this point you have communicated clearly, set expectations and confirmed commitment. Now you’re ready for the last part: following through.
This is the step that most people forget until something goes wrong.
Everyone needs help on following through. How often have you meant to do something in a certain way or by a specific time only to forget until someone reminded you?
The nice part about following through is that you do not have to be the only person remembering when tasks need to get
done. If you are clarifying expectations well, your co-workers and employees will know that their work matters and that they are expected to be accountable for their commitments. The cool thing to remember about working with other people is that with every pair of hands you get a free brain! Here’s how to ensure that expectations are met:
After your co-worker has committed to the expectation, ask her if she will be able to do it within the expected timetable in order to meet the deadline and get agreement on that date. Everyone involved should have a clear understanding of expected deadlines; if they don’t, you know how to fix it. Ask her to put it in her calendar and to check-in with you, or whoever the appropriate person is, as the project progresses.
Following through on expectations can be a shared responsibility – you don’t have to monitor everyone. I do recommend that you put her agreed-to date on your calendar or somewhere in your notes so that you can reference it if you don’t hear from her on time. That supports her commitment and helps maintain accountability and clarity for everyone – including you.
- Set a date and put it on the timeline.
- Have the person responsible for the task be in charge of checking-in and letting you and the team know that they’re done.
- You don’t have to carry all of the responsibility.
- Use all of the brains at your disposal!
- Remember that your team and your coworkers are there to help. Let them.
You now have the 4 basics of good communication at your disposal. All you have to do is repeat them. Forever.