“Anger always comes from frustrated expectations”
People want to earn glory, prestige and pride in life. People accept enormous hardship to reach their own expected dream. Some passionate people commit their entire life for a certain purpose of attainment. But, life is not an easy race rather full of challenges and constant uncertainty. Every day we pass through a lot of contested events and difficulties both in our personal and professional life. Although we all pursue success, often we have no control over the results of our efforts. Indeed, we have very less or no control over the context going to appear tomorrow, but we do have control over managing our expectations. We have scope to prepare ourselves to match uncertain situations. General George Patton says, “Success is not how high one climbs, but how well one bounces back when they hit the rock at the bottom.”
Probably, expectation is a word that has no limit. People want to achieve something higher in their life but often find new necessities when they reach the first need. The more we receive, the more our expectation enlarges. In this physical world, we often remain unsatisfied with what we have. We expect to have more and more. It happens with earning money, property, promotions, status, power, and almost all areas of human achievements. In fact, expectations are a kind of fundamental human instinct that has no limit. In an organizational environment, people often feel disappointed when they do not get something as they expected. It takes place during appointments in higher ranks, assignments in some dignified position, or even something very tiny related to daily life necessities. A leader has to pass through this critical phenomenon within his own mind and also deal with his men. This is a kind of psychological battle that takes place within each of our social and organizational environments.
Expectation Management Technique
Higher expectations are often helpful to commit ourselves to better performance and greater productivity. It motivates us to work hard and undergo challenges. A person who is committed to his profession and works very hard is likely to succeed and find himself elevated as he may dream. Being a passionate leader and a hard worker one may become the president of his country or the CEO of his corporation, yet he also has to prepare himself to leave his own chair one day. He also needs to remain prepared if some unexpected takes place in the race. Certainly, we all will have to stop at some point in our lives. This is the natural law that we are destined to a limited meaning of success. Conscious self-regulation can help us control our own emotions at those inevitable endpoints. A leader needs awareness of this reality and propagates the same realization among his men, friends, and family members well in advance.
The best way to deal with our expectations is to have profound self-awareness as well as social awareness. A leader who can enhance a culture of spiritual living; can manage and lead his men much better and manage challenging situations effectively. The more you can manage the materialistic expectations for yourself and others, the better you can move people in good going and adjust the course. Effective expectation management will also largely depend upon your conscious reasoning and proactive planning. As a leader, you have to organize an environment where people are self-aware about what they can expect and what they should not count on the way. Effective self-management ability to encounter unexpected context is an important individual skill that helps us individually as well as foster a better organizational environment. The following techniques may be helpful to sensitize your people for better expectation management in an organizational environment:
- Articulate the Risk: You need to carefully find out risks, challenges, potential issues, and vulnerabilities in your plan and prospects. You need to set alternative strategies to counter those likelihoods with care. It will help your men to adjust much better way when something unexpected arises on the way.
- Keep your Men Informed: Always keep the expectations clear and let your people understand what you want from them as well as what they can expect from you. It is important to truthful disclosure of risks and challenges to all. Advanced learning about the vulnerabilities of the potential outcome can naturally adjust expectations among all. It helps people to array themselves better in changing situations.
- Keep Expectations a Step Down to the Actual Ability: People feel dissatisfied when their expectations are away from reality. They may lose confidence in the promisor’s ability even with good reasons for something to go wrong. So, when you assure something to your men, it is better to promise little less than your actual ability to provide.
- Deliver a Little more than Actual: You may deliver a little more than what you have promised. People feel happy and contented when you can provide some more than they expected. However, a routine of such over-delivery may again cause expectation enlargement eventually become reasons for dissatisfaction in future. Apply the rules for all equally when providing some welfares or amenities to your men. Dissatisfaction does arise less from poverty but, people feel frustrated if they find some discrepancy in distribution even when they are free of such needs.
- Curb Expectations Gradually: You may encounter many uncomfortable requests and expectations from your surroundings. People may mostly look for some favour or opportunities out of your chair and office. In those cases, your one odd choice may destroy your lifelong reputation. So, you have to deal with those situations very tactfully. You also have to master the art of saying “No.” In those cases, listen to people with sympathy. Let them feel you respect their necessities and emotions. Give a kind of positive posture to keep people not being disappointed with you. Take time, look into the matter carefully and give them genuine feedback. Try to curb peoples’ expectations slowly and gradually towards appropriateness.