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7 Simple Questions To Ensure That You Don’t Have To Read The Minds of Your Employees

7 Simple Questions To Ensure That You Don’t Have To Read The Minds of Your Employees If you are managing people, keeping them productive and happy is a daunting challenge. However, we have found that a few simple changes can make a huge difference to improve their performance and keep you from pulling your hair out.

It is frustrating to have to read minds

For instance, did you know that many employees are frustrated because they feel like they have to read their manager’s mind? They don’t know how they are doing and how they can do better. The annual performance review is sometimes their only chance to find out, and that formal event is so stressful for you and your employee that the time spent together does not contribute to improvements.

The number of employees that report to you contribute to the problem

This situation is not completely your fault. In some organizations, the number of employees that report to an individual have become so large that managers have to complete another formal performance review every three or four days. That is just exhausting!

The solutions are simpler than you might think

There are many simple strategies to keep your employees working and happy. They cost almost nothing to implement, can be put into place almost immediately, and have a huge impact.

For instance, one opportunity that many managers have – even at the C-level – is to share more frequent, informal insights about how each of your employees are doing.

That way, everyone in an organization knows what is expected of them and how they can get better.

The seven questions

There are seven simple questions to ensure that you and your employees don’t have to read minds and that will improve overall communication. As with advertising, frequency counts. Small, informal conversations about performance go a long way – especially when they include “teachable moments” about different situations and details. The seven questions include:

  1. What do you understand that I expect from you?
  2. What are you doing well?
  3. What, if anything, can you be doing better?
  4. What, if anything, do you understand/assume that I want you to do better?
  5. (If appropriate): What will happen if you improve (e.g., more responsibility, more visibility, more desirable assignments)?
  6. (If appropriate): What will happen if you don’t improve?
  7. How can I help you?

While all of these questions are important, the last question is especially important. It shows your employee that you care, and that you are not merely abdicating responsibility or shifting blame. 

Reflect on the communication you had yesterday with your employees. When was the last time you had a "conversation" about their performance? Schedule time for a series of short "conversations" over coffee to talk about these 7 Simple Questions.

For more information about connecting with the hearts and minds of your employees take our FREE quick self-assessment to measure how well you and your employees are connected regarding their performance by clicking here.

Inspired Business Services – We help our clients build a culture based on trust that will help get to the next level of greatness. We help our clients create a culture of trust that increases revenue and retention.