Some years ago I was helping a client work out how to deal with a difficult employee. The client was ‘stuck’ on how to get the employee to improve her performance. He claimed he had tried everything. I asked a simple question. “Does the employee know your expectations of her performance?” The reply came, “Well, she should”. The situation was resolved by a simple, straightforward conversation where the manager clarified his expectations of the employee’s behaviour. Problem solved, but only when the manager got clear.
Here are some other things leaders need to get clear on.
Get clear on vision. What do you want your organisation to look like in the future? Create a clear picture and share it with your people.
Get clear on strategy and action. Plan the things that you are going to do to achieve the vision. Express them as goals.
Get clear on priorities. Decide on the most important things that you need to work on first.
Get clear on culture and values. Determine your guiding principles and your expectations of how people will conduct themselves.
Get on structure. Make sure everyone knows their responsibilities, expectations, reporting lines and communication lines.
Get clear on performance. Give people frequent, honest, relevant feedback.
If it’s not clear it’s cloudy, foggy, hazy or smudgy. Getting clear most often means simplifying the situation. Blow the clouds or haze away, help the fog to lift, or wipe away the smudges. If you want to lead effectively, get clear.
What sort of a lens are you looking through right now?