Anger, frustration, fear—all are the causes of unmet expectations. And how do unmet expectations occur? When employers and employees fail to communicate properly. So much of miscommunication can be attributed to assumptions. You’re assuming your employee understands exactly what your expectations are from employee manuals, email memos, and vague verbal instructions.
We often hear of people quitting because of bad bosses, but don’t take the time to analyze what they mean by “bad.” Bad often translates to bosses who constantly reprimand their employees who assumed they we’re doing the right thing. Miscommunication doesn’t just lead to an inefficient workplace; it often leads to turn over.
Employers often find themselves baffled that their employees failed to follow instruction without evaluating why their employees did so. The answer is almost never that the employee just outright didn’t want to listen to their boss. Many times, bosses do a poor job of explaining expectations.
Take for example a new employee who asks her boss what the appropriate dress code is for work. The employer simply responds, “business casual.” The employer falsely assumes that their employee has the same understanding of business casual as they do. But to the employee, business casual just means “dressing nice,” and she shows up to work wearing a blouse and leggings. Her employer is upset at her for “disregarding” the rules, and the employee is upset because her boss didn’t clarify what business casual meant, even after she asked. It’s small instances like these that stack up and lead to turn over.
When you make your expectations clear, communicate effectively, and avoid assuming, you actively battle employee turnover.
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