Feedback, although not always easy to share, is one of the most powerful tools in the managerial toolbox. Whether positive or negative, it arms employees with a guide that helps them to focus, shape, and direct their actions towards success. Employee feedback has numerous benefits, so if done right, it has a positive impact on the employee and the organization.
As a manager, you need to not only share feedback but also need to know how to share it. But before learning about tips on how to share feedback, let us look at some of the benefits.
THE BENEFITS OF SHARING FEEDBACK
- Helps in improving employee engagement
- Feedback motivates employees
- It is a tool for continuous improvement and learning
- Feedback improves performance
- Increases retention of employees
- Helps in increasing self-awareness
It goes without saying that giving feedback to your employees is very important. So it becomes crucial that feedback is shared correctly and is useful to them. Here are some pointers for you to keep in mind while sharing feedback.
Avoid The ‘Sandwich’ Approach
Feedback, whether positive or constructive criticism, should be relevant and shared clearly with the employee. Often, ‘compliment sandwiches’ are used while delivering criticism so that the employee doesn’t feel overwhelmed. This strategy involves fitting constructive criticism between positive praises and compliments. But doing so not only undermines the value of the actual feedback but also leaves the employees confused.
Focus on Behaviour
While sharing feedback, the focus should be on the behaviour of the employee or what they do instead of emphasizing their character. Identify behaviours or actions that you wish to reinforce throughout the organization that also resonates with your company culture. Elucidate its importance to your employee and what effect it will have on the team and the organization.
The Secret to Giving Constructive Criticism highlights two examples of sharing feedback.
Example 1: When you interrupt me in front of a client, it causes a problem.
Example 2: Your arrogance is causing a problem.
The first example is more impactful and acceptable to the employees as it focuses on the behavior and highlights the problem instead of personality.
Share It Often
“Continuous improvement is better than delayed perfection”- Mark Twain.
Make feedback a regular activity at your organization for it to work effectively. Managers and leaders often treat feedback as a formal process and do it at the time of performance reviews. Feedback works best when it is given at the moment and as close to the event as possible. The fresher the feedback, the more impactful it is. While frequent feedback will help you praise good work, at the same time, it will help you guide those who need it.
Be Specific and Concise
As mentioned above, feedback should not only be shared often and on time, but it should also be specific and concise for it to be effective. When feedback is specific, it helps employees to understand what they should keep on doing and what they should avoid for the success of the organization. Specific and concise feedback is a lot more helpful to the employees when they receive constructive criticism or negative feedback from their managers.
Example 1: Manager: “Jack, your presentation could have been in more detail.”
In the above example, Jack’s manager expresses concern but is not clear about what the presentation lacked or what he could have done to improve it.
Example 2: Manager: “Jack, your presentation was incomplete. You could have included the marketing leads received from SQLs and MQLs and added graphs to make it more insightful.”
The example above clearly outlines how Jack could have improved the presentation. It is specific and concise.
Don’t Miss to Follow Up
Following up with your employees is one of the crucial steps for the feedback to be effective. As a manager, you are not only responsible for sharing feedback but also instrumental in making sure that your employees work on it. From time to time, connect with your employees to understand how they are progressing and whether they need any help. It will help to appreciate those who have achieved success and help those who need it. It will motivate employees and encourage them to work harder.
Originally Published on Engagedly