Parenting would be a piece of cake if you could tell your kids once and only once to do something and know for certain it would be done, even if you didn’t check. But that isn’t the case with parenting, nor is it the case in most leadership situations. You can’t just tell your team that you expect them to follow your service standards 100% of the time, and know that it will be done.
I remember the first time I used the phrase, “It’s not what you EXPECT, but what you INSPECT that gets the RESPECT.” I was with a group of leaders and one of them said he felt it was a condescending phrase. I can see where it may be interpreted as condescending, but it can also be viewed as the foundation for a culture of accountability. You can tell the staff about service standards, but if you don’t walk around, observe and give feedback, your stated expectations won’t be taken seriously.
I have seriously seen this at least 100 times, where a leader trains staff on a tactic, then doesn’t follow through to make sure that it’s consistently implemented. It could be on anything from scripting to hourly rounds, or simply walking visitors to their destinations. The leader doesn’t make it a point to ensure that it’s being done, and then he complains that the “program” or “model” isn’t sustainable.
When your team members know that you will be rounding and keeping tabs on the work being done, they know you are serious about accountability. They in turn will show more respect for the work that is being done, knowing that you care enough to follow through.