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How to Give Employees the Feedback They Need

By Michael Heller Performance Feedback

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There is no denying that employees want feedback, but that doesn’t mean they are craving reviews. Even HR leaders and managers are catching on to the disadvantages of waiting for an annual, or even bi-annual review.  The best way to help employees thrive is to give them real-time feedback. This on-the-spot direction and redirection helps your workers adjust their performance immediately for the benefit of their career and your business. Take a look at these 6 steps on how to give the most effective employee feedback.

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Be Specific

Effective employee feedback is specific. Make an effort to chat with employees once a week or at least once a month. It will help them grow individually within your organization and help foster a relationship of trust. Take time to bring a specific instance of good or poor performance to discuss and always end the conversation with an invite to provide their own feedback. Employees need something to act on, accomplish or work toward. Providing an employee goal-oriented feedback will help make the conversation more valuable and actionable. And don’t be afraid to point out the positive behavior you hope to see more of!

Make It Happen In Real-Time

There are many perks to real-time feedback. One of them is easily fixing mistakes in the present. Real-time feedback ensures fixes happen quickly and efficiently instead of waiting for a review, potentially risking development of bad habits. It can also act as a positive reinforcement of good habits, something everyone benefits from. In fact, implementing real-time feedback lowers turnover rates by 14.9%. Plus, if you have praise to give, why not give it right away? This type of feedback promotes efficiency, productivity and growth.

Give the most effective employee feedback with these 6 steps: Click To Tweet

Prepare Prepare Prepare!

Don’t schedule a performance conversation without preparing. Write down what you want to cover. Reviews can be long and it’s important to cover everything while your employee is there. Without a plan, the meeting will undoubtedly be a waste of time for everyone involved and leave your employees confused with no real direction moving forward. In fact, 67% of employees feel engaged when their manager focuses on their strengths and positive characteristics. However negative feedback is just as crucial. If this meeting is one focused on critiques and redirection, don’t let your emotions overflow. Be sure you have calmed down before you begin the conversation. Giving negative feedback poorly will only cause an employee to have negative feelings toward you and possibly the company.

Be Constructive and Supportive

Be a mentor to employees. As a leader, your job is to show workers how to improve. This is important to remember when delivering feedback. Actually, 57% of employees prefer corrective feedback over praise, so as long as your tactful, there’s no need to sugarcoat things. Be sure to show support and give specific details on what they did wrong, as well as brainstorm ways to improve.

Listen to Employee Feedback

Have your employees write their own review/feedback before the performance conversation. Be sure these questions are open ended so the discussion is as valuable as possible. This will help them consider their own performance as well as how leadership is affecting their development. Listen to what your employees have to say. Their insight is just as important to improving the company as the performance management feedback you provide. This is a mutually beneficial conversation that will improve performance or set goals as well as explore how your company can better manage them.

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End on a Positive Note

It’s important to give negative feedback, but always start and end on a positive note. This will help balance any negative feelings and lower the defensiveness an employee may feel. If you are at a loss of how to do that in a more tense time, consider ending with future goals for your employee. Goal-setting will help focus the attention and improve behavior. Even better, employees are more motivated and engaged knowing exactly what is expected of them within the workplace. Success depends on the productivity, satisfaction and engagement of your employees.

Are these areas that you need to improve on? Learn how to implement real-time, frequent employee feedback in our downloadable how-to guide.

Michael Heller

Posted By Michael Heller

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