Instead of trying to change things overnight and start addressing every bad behaviour that's ever happened in your team, you can start by clarifying or changing expectations and accomplish three critical things...
First, every person can handle a conversation about clarifying or changing EXPECTATIONS.
Instead of catching difficult people off-guard and causing World War III, you're starting a conversation that's palatable, only slightly uncomfortable and doesn't cause them to be highly defensive.
Second, you are setting the foundation for one of the most difficult hurdles for any leader...accountability!
For someone to be held accountable, there needs to be crystal clear expectations in place.
You are now able to start holding them accountable, because they have a clearer understanding of your expectations for them and realise you'll be holding them accountable to those expectations.
Third, the expectations you clarify or change can be used to conduct SMALL BATTLES again, and again, and again.
If you hate conflict, you're not alone! But if you could get someone to step up or step out within four weeks by having small battles that are only slightly uncomfortable and don't blow up in everyone's faces... do you think you might be able to handle that?
Yes...I think you can.
BUT... you also accomplish three CRITICAL things with these small battles:
👉 You chip away at accountability rather than trying to smash it out of the park in one meeting (they've sat down with you to clarify or change the expectations so they're more open to the small battle about those expectations)
👉 You avoid the element of surprise which always leads to disaster (they're not caught completely off guard resulting in a highly defensive and aggressive response)
👉 You are well on your way to seeing them step up or step out within FOUR WEEKS (your small battles build up the pressure on the person gently causing them to self-determine to change their behaviour by stepping up or to change their circumstances by stepping out of your team or organisation)