This week we moved into a new house. The buying process was fraught with challenges, which continued when we moved in. And yes, we did have the expectation that there will be small ‘surprises’ along the way. However, ours have been much larger than expected. Things like being told the house was recently occupied, when it hadn’t been for 5 years. ‘Minor works’ on the railroad bridge turning into the rail company using 25% of our land as a parking lot. Water and drains being checked to be working turning into water drained down and every tap leaking. And the list goes on.
The most frustrating aspect in the experience has been we’ve asked questions about all of these issues. And we’re given a different answer. Our expectations were one thing and reality was very different. This resulted in a lot more stress than necessary over the past few days. And we’ve said multiple times that if we would have known, we could have made different plans.
However, while our story may be different from yours, we all have stories of misaligned expectations. Expectation management is a big part of our lives; it’s a big part of communication. And yet often, we are fearful of how the other(s) will react if we tell them the truth. Or we want to say what the other wants to hear so we get the job, the contract, win the bid.
Leading through change is all about expectation management. Communicating what you know and how it will affect others. But also inviting them into the story, into the journey. In addition, you don’t have to have all the answers. You can point people to others that do. Have a list, share the list, make it public. People are looking for others to trust.
The flip side is to be someone people trust drip by drip by drip.
And we are fine, we have an amazing brother-in-law who has worked wonders and helped us sort out water and heating. While we continue to chip away at the other challenges.