Tag Archives: expectations

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reciprocity expected

Reciprocity Expected, Fact or Myth?

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Is reciprocity expected? Do you have espoused values that guide you for each favor or do you often expect something in return? A future favor paid back?

It might be generational, but likely it is more about community.

Communities pop up everywhere. It is not just the borders of a small town or urban street block. Communities are about people.

There are communities on social media, there are like-minded people doing things to help others in the name of religion. There are also generous people who just enjoy helping someone who needs a hand.

What about reciprocity?

Reciprocity Expected

Are the concepts of reciprocity developed in childhood or as an adolescent? Does it come from parental guidance or is it hard wired from birth?

When someone lends you a hand, are you obligated to return the favor? For many people, this is the expectation or the guilt, whichever side you fall on.

Of course, you can’t forget about the psychological or even the sales factor connected to this.

As many would quickly recognize, giving something often solicits an expectation of receiving something in return. It is sales trick number 4.

If you have ever felt that you’ve been snookered by a rather crafty salesperson reciprocity may have been involved.

Perhaps what is better for your community, your workplace, close friends and family, or your neighbor is to simply give. Lend the hand, be generous, and expect nothing in return.

Generosity is something to be proud of, do the kind of work and be the kind of person that others admire and respect.

Give reciprocity a rest.

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.


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easy momentum

Easy Momentum, Is It Affecting You?

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Have you been anticipating easy momentum? It’s the concept that as time goes on, things get easier. Does this happen?

If you start a new exercise program, it may seem difficult at first. The expectation is that it will get a little easier if you stick with it regularly, across time.

Start a new job, it may be similar.

Put on a new pair of shoes, they may need to break-in.

Often our expectation of momentum is that once things get rolling, it will all get easier.

Is this a good perception or just a foolish lofty expectation?

Easy Momentum

If you were born in the U.S. in the early 1900s and lived at least 80 years or so, things probably got better. You survived the Spanish Influenza, the Great Depression, and witnessed technology improving lives. At least, this is the perception of onlookers.

Is the perception real?

The perception of history may be different from the mindset of those actually involved. The hardship may linger, the fear and expectations of change may not seem attractive, and the reflection in books or other media may be misleading.

Many people grow up with an expectation for improvement.

Things will get easier. Life will get easier.

Momentum is often considered a good thing, even inspirational. Once something starts, it is difficult to stop.

In sports, if you win one game, and then the next, you may start some momentum. Does that make the third win easier or more challenging? It may depend on your perspective.

In life, or in your career, as days, weeks, and months lead to years and decades does it get any easier?

Some might say, “yes,” while others argue, “no.”

Your perception of what is happening around you will have a lot to do with your expectations.

Onlookers often have belief different from those who are participating.

Momentum is often a game changer but it doesn’t necessarily mean it gets easier.

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.


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lowered expectations

Lowered Expectations, Is That a Strategy?

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Have you ever decided to go to the meeting with lowered expectations? Different from hoping for the best, or having a negative or positive attitude, right-sizing your expectations may be a game-changer.

Charles Dickens had something to invoke readers imagination in his novel, Great Expectations. Have you read it?

For most people, in their daily life, expectations can make or break your day. Often high expectations are considered positive, yet at the same time, high expectations not realized can bring you to a painful low. It might be about finding the right balance.

High Hopes

Hoping for a better outcome can certainly be constructive. Often your best energy is released when you enter the opportunity with high hopes.

Is hope counter intuitive for right-sizing expectations?

It likely depends on the circumstance or situation.

If you’ve prepared appropriately for the meeting, do you have hope?

Working hard sometimes seems to feel like it lacks the payout you deserve. Is that because you don’t have hope or is it that as you entered, your expectations were too high?

Another harmful consequence of improperly aligned expectations is that you learn to shy away from opportunity.

When you feel like you’ve been scammed, cheated, or promised but didn’t receive, you start to disconnect, disengage, and you aren’t eager about new opportunities.

More than that, there may be a breakdown in trust.

Lowered Expectations

When you are looking to the future and planning strategy. Having high hopes and great expectations makes a lot of sense. You remain practical and realistic, yet your target is higher and a bit challenging to achieve. That’s good.

If you are breaking new ground, making a recommendation that you know has been controversial in the past, or your delivery is seeking a lofty game-change, lowering expectations for the outcome may actually provide clarity and focus.

When you feel that there is a lot on the line and tension is high, your anxiety is elevated. Then fear and self-protection may start to creep in. You’re probably not doing your best work or giving your best delivery in those moments.

You fall back to hope.

Hope sometimes depends a little bit on luck. When we go in with high hopes, we probably are also expecting a good luck scenario. “Wish me luck,” may be the last thing you say as you navigate towards your meeting.

In some cases, lowering your expectations slightly may allow you to perform better and walk away much more satisfied with the outcomes.

With lowered expectations you don’t appear desperate. You don’t overwhelm or become overbearing to decision makers.

It often feels just right.

Just right yields better results.

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.


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customer requirements

Customer Requirements Are About Knowledge

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Are you meeting customer requirements? How do you know?

Perhaps the first step in analyzing whether the requirement has been met is to be certain you understand who the customer is. Not all customers are external, and not all customers are the end-user or consumer.

When you ask someone quickly about a customer, they often connect with the idea of retail shopping. The simple concept is, a person walks in, inquires or purchases goods, and at some point, leaves the store.

There are many assessments of customer touchpoints. Everything from websites to telephone calls to the receipt of goods shipped.

Customer service is a broad subject to say the least.

Are you meeting the requirements?

Customer Requirements

In the workplace, people are often suggesting that they did their best work. They tried hard, worked extra, and now take pride in the finished product.

However, it doesn’t necessarily mean that they met or exceeded customer expectations.

Building a good product or delivering exceptional service is always judged by the customer, not the builder.

Yet, every day the builder attempts to communicate the delightfulness of their goods or services.

It is challenging for the builder. They really have to know and understand the customer. This is exactly why many businesses are built around users of products or services in an attempt to make it better than the current best offering available.

Build a better car, a better television streaming experience, a better cell phone, a computing device, or even a better dish washer.

It may be challenging to build a better shovel, a better garden rake, or even a better ceramic coffee mug. Commodity products are often defined by the service associated with the sale.

Quality intersects with value.

It all begins with understanding the customer requirements.

Does every employee of your organization understand the customer requirements?

This is always the best place to start getting better.

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.


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mismatched expectations

Mismatched Expectations Will Get You Every Time

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Disconnects in customer service happen all the time. It happens for new hires, and it happens for the project. Mismatched expectations don’t mean that everything is lost.

As a young boy my son always loved my mother’s pot-pie. She had a special home-made recipe of beef pot-pie that seemed like the best comfort food on the planet.

When my son was in his early teenage years, we visited a restaurant and on the menu was pot-pie. Much to my surprise, instead of a burger and french fries my son ordered the pot-pie.

After the meals were brought to the table, I noticed him picking at his dish. He seemed displeased. It wasn’t the pot-pie that his grandmother made. It was a poor imitation.

The restaurant was very popular and served fantastic food, but to him, the dish seemed barely eatable.

Similarly, in high school, I had some friends who loved the boxed macaroni and cheese that their mother often prepared. What they didn’t realize that she often bought a low-priced generic brand. One day she splurged and bought a well-known and popular brand. My friends hated it.

In life, or in food, what you experience is often embraced or rejected based on your previous best experiences.

Have you ever had mismatched expectations?

Mismatched Expectations

It is true for the food you eat. It’s true for the new marketing plan, the process improvement, and even your job.

It is also true for everyone else, only sometimes in the opposite manner.

Often there may be room to compromise, negotiate, or allow for a fluid process. Of course, the level of satisfaction will always be compared to what was the previous best experience or taste.

Thus, the saying, “Those are big shoes to fill.”

Navigating your job, career, or the customer may not always be easy. It is a dance between your best delivery and the expectations of someone else.

When they align, everything feels like the right fit. When they don’t, the impulse is to discard it.

Keep in mind though that the right fit for someone may be the rejected mismatch by another.

Sometimes the best option is just on the other side of your expectations.

The challenge then is breaking the cycle.

It is a test of sorts. A test for the reliability and authenticity of the disambiguation, what you see is what you get.

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.


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greater expectations

Greater Expectations Change The Distance

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Expectations always condition the results. Lofty goals can be a distraction as much as an inhibitor or motivator. Should you have greater expectations?

When people expect a lot and get less there is a feeling of being let down. It impacts the perceived value or quality of the product or service.

Should expectations be lowered?

The customer with lower expectations is easily delighted. The provider with higher expectations tends to deliver more.

When you flip those around a customer may never feel satisfied or the provider may always under deliver.

In a social climate (or workplace culture) that honors and recognizes serving others, how should you position yourself?

When you want to give your best effort or position yourself for longevity and future advancement, what should your expectations be? Should you aim high or low? Should it be for the short-run or the long-run?

Greater Expectations

It often feels rare for employees to be committed to fully serving the greater good of the organization. People talk a good story, yet actions and behaviors seem to feel individualized.

When each individual chooses a path and commits to it, they become a role model for everyone else. Those with long-term commitment or the fast-trackers are often observed by others. They are being watched for clues on the culturally accepted behaviors.

That means your individual positioning matters. Regardless of your rank, longevity, or history, what you do next becomes a part of the culture and will determine your future.

What should your goal be?

When you set expectations higher for your own personal contribution, you’ll delight more customers. The customer may be external, or it may be the boss, co-workers, or the organization.

When you want to go further, set higher expectations for yourself. It brings out more of the best in everyone.

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.


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anticipated expectations

Anticipated Expectations Are Based On Perceptions

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What are your anticipated expectations? Everyone has some expectation, and what happens next may not be what you anticipate will happen.

Given the current circumstances in the United States and around the World, some people are asking if life as we once knew it will ever be the same. Chances are good; in fact, they are great, that there will be significant change.

Perception of Change

There are at least two things for consideration.

The first is that things are always changing. Sometimes almost unnoticeable in the moment but things are changing. It is hard to watch a tree grow during the scope of a single day, or even a week. However, across a few years, things look quite different.

A second, and perhaps more important point, is that there has been a significant disruption to everyone’s daily life. One of the difficult aspects of the disruption is that it has taken away the status quo and the slower pace of what we may consider as, normal change.

Things are going to be different. Our perceptions of normalcy are what create and develop our expectations. We expect the Sun will rise tomorrow. We can anticipate the event.

A simple analogy of the sunrise is true for how many businesses have operated since before the industrial revolution. We’ve also had some disruptions along the way. Wars, economic recession or depression, and even terrorism.

Any single significant event can alter the course for the future.

Anticipated Expectations

This time, the time right now, there is a significant event. Things are not going to be the same.

For our workplaces, jobs, and millions of people, things are going to be different. Expectations will change, and the anticipation of what tomorrow will be, will continue to be driven by perception.

If you have the perception that everything will find its place, that the gap in disruption will narrow, and that there will be new ways of commerce and opportunity, your expectations will be met.

The truth behind all of the disruption is that every person has an opportunity to contribute. If you’re focused on making it the way it was instead of the way that it can become, you’re going to face a lot of disappointment.

Not everything will change. Yet, many things will pivot or shift, anywhere from a just a little, to a lot.

It’s all about your power. The power to be proactive or reactive.

Which will you choose?

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.


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promised results

Promised Results Are Often Just a Surprise

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The new year resolution, the new job opportunity, and the lowest price on-line, what do they all have in common? What are the promised results?

Enthusiasm will sell a lot. The energy, fast talk, and big promises often spring people into action.

Do they get what they expected?

Expectations and Results

The new year resolution doesn’t always crash because the person is unmotivated or doesn’t try. The resolution will often crash because the expectations are unrealistic.

It is also true for workplace commitments. Join our team and you’ll be a supervisor within six months, a manager within eighteen, and then we’ll be growing so much you’ll run a division within two years.

It could happen, but often is not as advertised.

On-line shopping has similar behaviors. The lowest price seekers, the open-box, the refurbished, and the discontinued. Sometimes, yes, there are deals. Often, it is more about buyer beware.

The expectations are set by the marketing, the hype, and the false-perceptions created by the word-of-mouth from strangers.

What results have you been promised that have come up short?

Have you been a victim of the hype?

Promised Results

People can make suggestive promises fairly easily. It happens all the time.

It may not be surprising that many people are looking for that shortcut. The perception is that someone else did it, so why not me?

I want to get ahead too. I want the better job, the sleeker physique, and the flashy BMW on the Chevrolet Spark budget.

By now you’ve probably been disappointed by something. The quick fix, fast diet, and easy money. The work from home, vacation more, and live large gimmick.

The old saying, “Talk is cheap.” has never been more relevant.

Often the shortcut is not the promised result.

It is not what is mentioned in the advertisement, the brochure, or the clever social media video.

The shortest cut is often to the disappointment.

You shouldn’t be surprised.

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.


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promised time

Promised Time May Be a Communication Blunder

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Is someone seeking your time? Is it a client, a customer, or maybe a family member or even a friend? Have you promised time?

It often feels like time is working against us. We struggle to get it all done, done right, and done on time.

There a pressure associated with the commitment and worse, expectations from the person who feels as if they’ve been promised.

Expectations Set

We all know the situation. If we promise something in 30 minutes and we deliver in 25 minutes we’re a hero. If we fail, and deliver in 40, 50, or 60 minutes we may be regarded as a zero.

Often it is the little things that count. The small details that add up to an overall experience. It is true with the customer and it is true with family and friends.

Across time, those experiences become the expectation. They become your brand. What you deliver and when, become a perception for others.

Experience Guides Us

In the U.S. you may be hard pressed to find someone who doesn’t know about the McDonald’s restaurant chain. For nearly everyone, you have and expectation of the menu. Perhaps a burger, french fries, and a drink.

Your perception of McDonald’s is based on your experiences.

Simple. Straight forward.

When it comes to time, are you holding up your commitment?

Promised time may be one of the hardest things for us to keep.

Promised Time

The people that you work with. The people who are present in your life. They have an expectation.

You often communicate expectations.

I’ll be back in a minute.

Let me finish this it will just take a minute.

Please give me until the end of the week, I’ll send it in an email.

If you are setting the expectation there is no one else to blame when you come up short.

Promised time is your brand. Make sure you keep your brand promise.

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.


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hope

There Is Something Different About Hope.

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You’ve heard it before, “Don’t give up hope.” Hope may make the difference between dreamers and achievers.

One thing about hope is that it leaves room for disappointment.

I hope…

I’ll win the lottery.

It will be perfect weather.

My flowers will bloom.

There is always some room for things to come up short. The anticipation feels empty after coming up short on expectations.

Extra Effort

Some people give up too soon, too easily, and set their expectations too low.

Not because it is impossible, but because they make it impossible. If you don’t think that you can, you probably won’t.

When you insist that there will be limits, there will be. If you see the opportunity as too risky, it will be.

When you arrive at your job and believe it will be a painful experience, you’ll find evidence to support it.

Disappointment is part of life. So is your commitment for choosing how you’ll play it.

Without a little risk, without the extra effort, without a commitment to endure, what have you accomplished? What was the journey?

Realistic Hope

Hope should be realistic. Hoping that your horse becomes a unicorn seems silly and ridiculous.

Being committed to finding more energy in a time of need may start with hope. It may be similar for the outlook of health or happiness. In some cases, it may even change your situation for wealth.

Giving up hope is the first step to finding the limit. When you don’t risk disappointment there is little enthusiasm for the journey.

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.


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