L&D: You Need to Help in Clarifying Expectations for learners/Performers

I’m Not Sure I Totally Agree With This Quote

As stated…

It doesn’t make sense to hire smart people and then tell them what to do. We hire smart people so they can tell us what to do.” —Steve Jobs

I’m going to nitpick this a bit. I do agree with it partially – but not totally.


In Fact – I Disagree – Unless “Clear Expectations” Are Assumed

“It makes sense to hire smart people and then tell them what to do. But not how to do it – unless it’s regulated or contractual. Hire smart people and establish expectations about both outputs & measures and tasks & measures, if necessary, so they can get on quickly with their performance.” —Guy W. Wallace

Tom Gilbert wrote about this in his 1978 book: Human Competence. Here is model (to be avoided) on Creating Incompetence.


To many managers however, seem to operate on a “I’ll know it when I see it” mode.

Here is the Gilbert model – the BEM – Behavior Engineering Model – from that same book.


Of course it takes more than just clear expectations – a subset of Data/Information – in my EPPI Fishbone Diagram.

That category of Process “enablers” is but one of twelve sets of variables in my model of Performance as a System…


Getting out of the way – and not Micromanaging your staff – is a good idea – but only if the expectations are clear.


The Role of L&D in This

If managers don’t do this well, and consistently – then L&D can help “pin this down” and communicate it.

And it can train managers on how to do this themselves – and the importance of it (in reverse order). With authentic Practice with Feedback.



# # #


Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.