Video Series: Managing a Remote Marketing Team

Day 2 - Expectations


Over the years working with marketing teams, one of the most common issues I’ve found has to do with expectations.

There are two major issues when it comes to expectations. The first has to do with managers.

Managers often have really, really high expectations of their team and I’ve seen this manifest itself in three different ways.

The first is that sometimes managers expect their team to have all the answers all the time. Now, no one knows all the answers, and definitely not all the time. Marketing, and in particular marketing technology, is changing at such a rapid rate that no one knows everything or has all the right answers.

The second problem has to do with results.

Numbers go up and down and as you know, results fluctuate, but some managers can expect their team to deliver consistent, strong results all the time. Now, this is completely unreasonable, but we’ll talk more about process and results and how to mitigate that in future videos.

The third issue has to do with management.

Some managers give their team too much control and self control in allowing them to manage themselves. Now this is a big mistake because teams needs support, structure, guidance, and accountability in order to be effective.

The second major issue I’ve seen when it comes to expectations is the teams themselves.

Every single time I interview a marketing team, I discovered the same thing; a lack of clear and well-defined expectations.

If you want to improve the productivity and performance of your team, you must give them clear and well-defined expectations. When people fail to deliver or deliver the wrong thing, it’s often because the expectation set for them was incorrect or because they didn’t have any expectations set for them.

So here’s your action item for today and a simple three step process you can use to set clear expectations for your team.

First, you need to identify the expectations that you have of your team. You probably have a good idea of this, but it’s worth taking a few minutes to think through all the expectations that you have of your team and keep in mind that you will have different expectations for different team members based on their roles and responsibilities.

The second is to document these expectations. It’s not enough just to know them yourselves, you need to write them down and make them explicit. Then you can schedule time later this week or next week to share that document with your team and get acceptance from them. Notice I said acceptance, not feedback. You’re looking for them to agree to these expectations.

Third and final, now you can keep them accountable. Once you’ve identified, documented, and gotten agreement on these expectations, then you can keep your team accountable. Your team will be grateful to know what’s expected of them and when they know what you expect, they’ll be much more apt to deliver on those expectations.