Expect the Best – Get The Best

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Think of a time when someone (parent, teacher, boss) expected the best from you.  You responded by performing better than you had thought possible.

With that positive encouragement and the bar being set high for you what else was he or she implicitly communicating? In expecting the best the person was saying:

“I know what you are capable of doing.”

“I believe you can perform at the highest levels.”

Setting high expectations is a powerful motivational tool. However, once leaders have,

1. Established high expectations 2. Leveraged the individual’s strengths 3. Connected with what the person wants 4. Provided the needed resources

Anyone can produce the very best.

Berlew and Hall (1966) examined the relationship between a manager’s high expectations at AT&T and subsequent employee performance.

Results indicated a strong positive relationship between manager expectations of employees during their first year on the job and the employees’ subsequent performance over the following 6-7 years.

It was concluded that placing high expectations on new employees could lead to high levels of performance and later success in the company.

It is amazing how transformative it can be for individuals or organizations when others expect the best of you.

Who was that person in your life? I would love to hear your story in the comments section.

About cedricj

I am a licensed psychologist and management consultant and have always been intrigued by how leaders can inspire people in their organizations. The bottom line is that people are not always motivated by material rewards, the use of the carrot or the stick, fear and intimidation,and command and control, Five human needs inspire and drive us. Kristine S MacKain, Ph.D and myself describe these inspirational forces in our book "What Inspirational Leaders Do" (Kindle 2008)
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