TRIPLE III TIME: Innovation & Expectation Monitoring
As leaders… no matter the leadership role you assume… it is necessary to delegate/assign certain projects or duties to individuals or possibly a group. In this process it is understood that as the leader and delegator… you share your list of expectations of project completion and areas of success. It all sounds so simple… right?
But what happens when those given the assignment take an “innovation turn” and go a non-traditional route for completion? As might be expected… the results are not exactly what was planned but a great deal of learning and project alternative discoveries were reported? Given the unplanned changes, where do your instincts as a leader take you and what form of appropriate “next-step” action(s) do YOU take?
As you answer this question… I suggest the first thing you must do is ask yourself: Am I an EXPECTATION MONITOR? Do I monitor the individual or group and measure them against the way I would have completed the project? Do I evaluate their results solely against MY EXPECTATIONS of positive outcomes?
In response to this question, I need to brag that some of my greatest experiences as a leader came from making wide-open project assignments that had equally wide-open results. Individuals were challenged to be innovative and share creative visions of assignment completion. Most importantly the assigned project no longer was just MY priority… rather it was “owned” by all involved in its development and delivery.
Bottomline: It is critical to consider your priorities and if you truly believe in innovation at all organizational levels… you cannot be an EXPECTATION MONITOR. Why… because an EXPECTATION MONITOR will:
- Crush innovations
- Limit group contributions
- Lessen individual participation
- Lower agency trust
- Confirm a negative “I’ll do it myself” mentality
I guess I am encouraging you to enjoy the privilege of delegating and trust the existence of an innovative spirit!