1. What am I supposed to do?
The fastest way to confuse a workforce is to speak in grandiose, visionary language. People--including you and me-want to know, specifically, what has to be done as well as what "good" looks like.
2. Will you let me do it?
This employee mental question is the result of too many experiences with managers who got in the way by doing #1 just fine and then jumping in when not needed.
3. Will you help me when I need it?
Employees do want to know that it's ok to ask for help when the situation requires it; and, that they'll get it without judgment. Asking for help shows maturity and character; so does giving it.
4. Will you let me know how I'm doing?
We all want to know where we stand with our boss. It's just plain uncomfortable not knowing--and not knowing can cause a well-intentioned employee to continue doing things the wrong way. After all, no one is indicating that anything should change!
Remember: Performance is impacted the most by frequency and timeliness of feedback.
What would happen if you--or your boss--paid attention to these four questions?