If you run a coffee bean company (which I do), expect more bags of beans to be sold and when Barry complains about doing more work (e.g. more bags of beans to fill), you will need to listen.
If you recruit and hire people (which I do), expect that someone (e.g., other Barry) at your client company will spam your new hire with terrible directions, forms and processes on how to start with the company. If you want to hire more people, expect to make the process better.
If you recommend candidates to hiring managers expect that some hiring managers will be terrible at interviewing, selecting and make your job harder because they need more help with hiring. Even worse – expect some hiring managers to think they are good at recruiting when they are BAD.
If you choose to work with technology people who have self-diagnosed ADHD, expect them to check their phones more than they look at you in the eye. Expect people to be distracted. Be different and don’t be distracted.
If you hire people, expect to tell more people “NO” than “YES”. Only one person can get the job. Practice giving feedback to people so they can improve for their next job interview. Many people do not expect feedback, but they appreciate the feedback if it’s genuine.
It starts with no expectations.
Except that you will be expected to do the work. If you are having a bad day, do not expect anyone to understand or hug you. If you are doing awesome, do not expect your boss, client or anyone for that matter to notice how great you are doing. Either way, expect to still do the work.
Paying attention is your most powerful tool as a leader. Any kind of leader: parent, leader, team member, recruiter, friend, husband, wife, son, daughter, neighbor, boss…you name the role, you need to use the power of attention.
Pay less attention to the expectations of others and pay more attention to what you are paying attention to. Move beyond the easy stuff like pay, workload, etc. Pay attention to your own behaviors and other people’s behaviors and recognize the good behaviors, call them out and keep doing them.
Pay little attention to negative talk and nit-picky criticism.
Paying attention doesn’t cost you anything either. It takes awareness and discipline. For one day, tell someone 20 things they do great. Tell yourself this too. Nobody will expect this and you will change behavior.
That is what you should expect of yourself. Pay attention to Barry when he has to fill more bags of coffee beans or pay attention to candidates when they do not know what to expect before and after the interview.
Ben Martinez – family guy, coffee critic, planker, and HR & Recruiting journeyman. He has successfully worked in HR leadership roles around the US and Mexico for Fortune 500 companies (Pepsi, Honeywell, and Energizer). Most recently he was the VP of People & Culture for HireVue, where he hired 400+ people in almost five years using video, social media, and created the employment brand, VueNation in partnership with HireVue.
Ben now runs his own consulting company, Ramp Talent, where they ramp recruiting and HR for startups. From recruiting ready-to-go talent to implementing ongoing best practices to preventing legal headaches, we build the first HR and recruiting systems for fast-growing startups.
PS – coffee is for closers – Ben founded an e-commerce subscription coffee company focused on re-imagining coffee in the workplace and home – Sumato Coffee Co. They only roast your beans within 48 hours of your order.
Ben lives in the SLC, Utah area.