Set Expectations to Be a Success
Sometimes, some customers expect too much.
So do bosses, spouses, kids, parents, family members, friends and anyone else you have a relationship with.
Why do they expect too much?
We hate to do this. It’s something we rarely do. But we feel it’s necessary in this case. Before we try to fix the problem, let’s fix the blame.
It’s your fault!
You’re the reason they expect so much.
Before you get defensive, take comfort in this. We’re in the same boat as you are; it’s our fault with the people in our world.
What have we all done wrong? In most cases, it’s a communications problem. And a timing issue.
Let’s think about an example. A customer hires you to do a project. You’re excited to have the work. It will be great to get paid.
So you jump in and get started. You get it done. But the customer is far from thrilled. In fact, they’re unhappy.
They said they expected Y. You only delivered X.
You knew upfront that you were only going to deliver X. You didn’t price the job to provide Y.
But you never told the customer.
There’s the communication problem. Of course, you could tell the customer now. But that’s where the timing issue comes in.
Now, anything you say will sound like an excuse. And relationships aren’t built on excuses.
So what can you do?
In this case, we would eat the extra costs and deliver Y. But we would take a lesson away so we get a return on this unfortunate investment.
What’s the lesson?
You must communicate upfront if you want to manage expectations. Before you start a task, a project or a relationship, everything is open for discussion.
But expectations are being set based on those discussions.
When you tell a customer what you can’t do upfront, it’s an explanation. After the fact, it’s an excuse.
Set expectations upfront so you don’t have to make excuses. It leads to BIGG success!
How do you manage expectations?
Image in this post from stroinski