Did you know unspoken expectations and assumptions are huge contributors to creating a stressful work culture?  This is particularly true when unexpected, life and market altering events like a pandemic, upend your already busy routine!

If this is how you are feeling, it’s time to revisit your own expectations and assumptions.

We Know so They should Know

Now more than ever the quality of verbal communication matters. During times of stress it’s a given that communication with clients is prioritized.

Too often, however, communication with partners and team members can be abrupt and expedient at best.  Leaders will give a directive once and then assume everyone understood.  Their expectation is that what they want will be executed in the way they believe it should be.

Often this is due to our own internal communication “shortcuts” as a result of our expectations and assumptions.






Depending on how attached we are to this way of thinking—which, if we’re honest, is often a way of being—this can create an emotional speedbump or roadblock.  It’s not a reason to beat yourself up!  With self-awareness this is a pattern than can be disrupted.

Speedbump or Roadblock?

A “speedbump” can be reflected in lower level negative emotions.  As a leader you may feel:

  • annoyance
  • frustration
  • distrust

Without saying a word, these feelings are communicated nonverbally.  The result is too often stressful reactions fueled by hurt feelings or fear.  Which reduces team engagement and, ultimately client service and productivity both suffer.  You can think of these emotions as an internal yellow alert signaling: Proceed with Caution.

A “roadblock” as you’ve probably guessed by now, has the potential for even greater negative consequences.  These highly charged feelings are often experienced by all involved and chip away at precious levels of trust. They include:

  • anger
  • resentment
  • dislike and even greater distrust

You can think of these emotions as an internal red alert signaling: Stop!

Check in with yourself.  Are you in the yellow zone or red zone?

If yes, what expectations or assumptions are you making that need to be checked out with the people involved? This is an investment of time likely to pay quick dividends in the quality of your culture and relationships.

If this is the right time for you to dig deeper into how reduce the speedbumps in your business, I’d love to help!  Connect with me here.

Click here to download our complimentary report- “5 Questions Business Owners Never Ask and Should, to Create a Succession Plan that Works ”