I have learned that there is only one secret to delivering a successful assignment and a great job - know the given expectation and then meet it (or even better, exceed it). Take my personal experience for example, I always set a very high expectation for myself in things that I do.

There’s nothing wrong with this, but it may not help much to ensure that my job is considered successful by the one who gives me the assignment.

Here's why:

  • If my own expectation is higher than that of my boss, yes my boss will be happy and maybe impressed with my work, but I end up consuming more time and energy which may not be necessary to get the job done.

  • If my own expectation is lower than that of my boss, no matter how satisfied I am with my own work, my boss will be disappointed. That in turn will disappoint me in the end because to my boss, I did not do a good job.

See, what matters here is the expectation of the one who gives us the assignment.

So the next time you receive an assignment:

  • FIRST: Have a clear understanding of your boss’ expectation from you out of the assignment. If you want to learn exactly what your boss wants from your assignment every time, I've made this Stretch-2 Checklist mini email course for you - and it's FREE for my readers so go sign-up.

  • SECOND: Evaluate and see if the given deadline is realistic to fulfill the given expectation. If it is not, it is wise for you to negotiate on either the timeline or the expectation upfront before you agree to take up the assignment.

The rule of thumb if you want to exceed the given expectation

Give enough wow factors (e.g. deliver earlier than the agreed deadline, improve the presentation visual that actually helps to convey the message more effectively, include insightful analysis beyond requested, etc.) without causing you unnecessary stress or consuming your desired sleeping hours.

In short, balance it out. You want to over-deliver comfortably.

Relevant Bible reading to inspire you (2 min)

Scripture: Matthew 25:14-30 (The Parable of the Talents told by Jesus).

"Again, it will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted his property to them. To one he gave five talents of money, each according to his ability. Then he went on his journey. The man who had received the five talents went at once and put his money to work and gained five more. So also, the one with the two talents gained two more. But the man who had received the one talent went off, dug a hole in the ground and hid his master's money.

"After a long time the master of those servants returned and settled accounts with them. The man who had received five talents brought the other five. 'Master,' he said, 'you entrusted me with five talents. See, I have gained five more.'

"His master replied, 'Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master's happiness!'

"The man with the two talents also came. 'Master,' he said, 'you entrusted me with two talents; see, I have gained two more.'

"His master replied, 'Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master's happiness!'

"Then the man who had received the one talent came. 'Master,' he said, 'I knew that you are a hard man, harvesting where you have not sown and gathering where you have not scattered seed. So I was afraid and went out and hid your talent in the ground. See, here is what belongs to you.'

"His master replied, 'You wicked, lazy servant! So you knew that I harvest where I have not sown and gather where I have not scattered seed? Well then, you should have put my money on deposit with the bankers, so that when I returned I would have received it back with interest.

" 'Take the talent from him and give it to the one who has the ten talents. For everyone who has will be given more, and he will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him. And throw that worthless servant outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.'

Your turn to contribute

Do you have other great and unique secret to delivering a great job too? Come share with us in the comment below. I read and appreciate every comment.

Q: What is the secret to always delivering a great job?

By Stephanie Cristal

Leave a comment

Rickhazzle D

To add, good employers need to learn to see the bigger picture too. In most cases, work is overloaded, so need to focus on identifying which task is of the utmost priority.

Part of new goal setting for a new year is to discuss on the desired end result, so that the works throughout the year are to achieve that desired goals. In some cases, we are too occupied with useless works which do not contribute to the desired end result. Need to change this

Stephanie Cristal

That's a very sharp observation of an undesirable work pattern that young executives can learn to 'catch' and address at the very beginning of executing any given task - understanding why we need to do this task. Indeed, this is so crucial that I went in-depth with examples on this in Step 3 of my Stretch-2 Checklist mini email course. Good job for highlighting this, Rick.

Simon Emang

Stephanie, it's awesome. It's only God and your love for Him would enable you to be so generous in you time in helping others; brothers & sisters in the market place. In fact every soul on earth needs what is good. In moving forward, it may be good to have a group of like minded people including expertise in specific areas as life issues are not limited to doing a good job or career. Great start. May the Lord bless you & family as you bless & refresh others.

Stephanie Cristal

Amen, thank you so much Mr Simon for your truly assuring encouragement and reminder to fix my eyes on Christ as I pursue this ministry. God blesses you and your ministry too.

Amelia Cristal

"Produce fruit in keeping with your repentance." — Luke 3:8

Stephanie Cristal

Amen! Yes, let's deny ourselves and carry our cross one day at a time.

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