manage expectations

 

In recruiting I find that managing expectations is extremely important.  Being able to create and articulate clear plans and time lines for completing work is not only appreciated, but it also saves a lot of time in the long run.

After I have received all the necessary info about a new project or requisition, I start to break everything down and analyze it. From there I work with my team on creating the project plans.  Being able to provide our clients with clear plans for tackling the work gives them confidence that our team can get it done. This also gives a client an opportunity to express their concerns and articulate their expectations so we can meet their needs.

Once a client knows the game plan, I still need to manage the expectations of my direct supervisor.  She knows the plan we provided to the client, and she needs to see that we are following that plan on a daily basis and achieving our goals.  However, life doesn’t always go smoothly.  Maybe someone in the office is unexpectedly absent. Maybe all of the candidates I spoke with today still haven’t sent me their resumes. Maybe I am just having a bad day.  Whatever might be happening, I need to keep my manager informed.  She needs to have confidence that I am still working towards the goals that have been set for me, even if my plans for the day have changed.

Finally, and possibly most importantly, I have to manage the candidate’s expectations.  This is a step many people miss. Even I am guilty of it.  Telling a candidate they will hear from you “soon” doesn’t actually tell them anything.  To them, “soon” could mean three hours.

To you, “soon” could mean three months. When telling a candidate that they need to accept their offer “immediately”, you might mean they should act the moment they hang up the phone.  But to them, “immediately” could mean responding within a few days.  Take the time to specify a realistic time frame for each step in the process. By being clear about your expectations you’re also helping to set theirs.

Managing expectations isn’t always easy.  Taking the time to set a clear plan helps keep everyone on the same page. How are you managing expectations?

By Caitlin Mandeville | People Science Talent Advisor