Research has shown that managers that have high expectations for their employees lead them to work harder and commit to conquering the challenges ahead of them.

So expecting the best from your team is a good way to get it.

Christina Curtis, a leadership and executive coach at Colorado consulting firm Ignite Performance Consulting, has provided coaching support for Olympic athletes and executives at Fortune 500 companies. She says there are three common strategies that consistently emerge from the leaders she coaches.

Reframe the team’s narrative.

People tend to process and remember events as stories. These narratives have power. They can affect the way we see the past as well as how we act in the future. Use the power of narrative for team improvement, and avoid the trap of creating a story of blame or guilt. Curtis often sees her clients ruminate over where they went wrong. When a setback occurs, she says you should help your team identify what went wrong and ask them what they learned from it.

Shine a light on what’s working.

Creating a negative narrative focuses the attention on the mistake, not what was learned from it. Curtis says fixating on mistakes undermines team members’ confidence, but that the reverse is true, too. She suggests providing positive feedback, which will help your employees envision their success and elevate their performance.

Give your team members more control.

Research has consistently illustrated the benefit of empowering employees. By giving them input into the setting of their own goals and letting them figure out how the work should get done, you will enhance their commitment to achieve.

Curtis says the key to empowering your team is establishing trust. She recommends leaders rate the strength of their relationship with each direct report on a five-point scale. If any relationships score less than a four out of five, create an action plan that determines how you will go about fixing them.

Trust in senior leaders directly impacts employees’ attitudes toward their company and their work, according to a study conducted in March by Globoforce. Of the 828 employees surveyed, 80 percent trusted their peers, 72 percent trusted their bosses, and 65 percent trusted their senior leadership.

One simple way to increase the amount of trust in management is to call out good work when you see it. According to the Globoforce study, employees who received the most recent recognition expressed significantly more trust in their leadership. Employees recognized within a month before the survey reported trust for senior leaders at a rate of 82 percent, compared to a 48 percent trust rate for those receiving no recognition.

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