You might think working with you is a dream. You’re in your head all day, so, you know your intentions and beliefs better than anyone else, and I am sure they all sound reasonable. The problem is; no one else is in there with you. Even your closest allies, those who know you inside and out, are sometimes surprised by your actions.
Because you are not nearly as clear as you think you are. You didn’t come with a user’s guide, and you’re kind of hard to figure out.
What if you changed that? What if you sat down individually with the people who are important to you and you gave them a cheat sheet with insight into your work style?
Consider creating a one-page user’s guide that would give the people who work with you a fighting chance of getting it right.
It could include things like; what you value, your self-acknowledged strengths and weaknesses, and if you’re brave, your idiosyncrasies. Maybe add how you prefer to make decisions, or how people should fess up to you if they make a mistake.
Documenting your expectations takes away ambiguity and whim; two pieces of baggage leaders should travel without. If you are artistically inclined, make it an infographic, or use pictures to convey universal principles.
Highlight topics that give the people you work with insight into you. Maybe you could provide a guiding quote that is meaningful to you. Avoid testimonials or significant achievements; your user’s guide is not a resume or a brag sheet. It is a single page of instructions and clues designed to help the people you interact with ensuring better results.
Candidly, it is less about the guide and more about the conversations it can foster. Build a guide regardless; it will improve your self-awareness and raise the caliber of communication you have with others.
Click on the image below to view a sample user’s guide.