Achieving success at work and moving up the career ladder are among the many other life goals that many of us aspire to. Only continuous and frequent feedback will enable this. If your staff doesn’t understand their strengths, limitations, and areas for improvement, how else will they be able to advance?
Giving constructive criticism or useful information that may be used to better a situation in the future is what feedback is all about. Employee feedback is crucial for the whole organization as well as for the personal development of your staff members. It has a significant impact on engagement, productivity, and performance.
As an employee, when you get regular feedback, you know what the company expects from them, how you are performing, and what needs to be improved. It will help you grow in your team and career. The other part of feedback is giving feedback to your manager. It is not easy as most employees don't like to share their opinion - especially if they have something negative to say about the culture or the organization.
Therefore, the management must create a safe environment so employees can give feedback. They should be able to give their honest opinion without fear of negative repercussions. Employees need to learn the right ways of sharing and receiving feedback.
What are the best ways to share feedback?
The truth is that employees would gladly accept feedback. 75% of workers who do receive feedback believe it to be of utmost significance to their work. 65% of workers stated they desired more feedback. Give feedback to employees right away rather than waiting until annual reviews so they may take charge of their tasks and initiatives.
Below are some effective ways employees should share feedback with their managers:
Ask how to share feedback: Employees should ask the team leads or managers how they would like to receive the feedback. Based on their preference, employees share feedback with managers. It makes the conversation two ways. Also, it makes the feedback more systematic - not personal or sounds like an attack.
Have a transparent mind-set: If you have something to share, first evaluate the feedback - listen to your mind and heart. Every employee has the right to express how they feel, but as an employee looking to share feedback with the managers, you need to investigate your feeling - if it is true. Also, evaluate if the feedback will make the work culture better. If so, go ahead and share the feedback. If it is self-centered, you may want to revisit it.
Show you understand the process before you share feedback: If you are not happy with how your team works, and you share feedback as - 'I don't like how a team works.' It may not be appreciated by the managers. Instead, you should explain to the leaders the current process of your team, possible reasons for the way the process is a set up that way, and how you think it can be better. This feedback approach will surely be appreciated.
Make your feedback authentic and timely: To make feedback impactful, you need to keep it authentic and timely. Most employees try to give feedback anonymously. It may not be taken too seriously. However, when you share feedback with your name, it shows respect and establishes credibility.
Create informal exchange: One way to share constructive feedback with managers is to create an informal exchange over lunch or coffee. This approach allows you to build rapport before diving into the tough stuff. Your message should be delivered in a way that encourages the exchange to continue by asking for a reaction and looking for the next steps. It will help create shared ownership for the feedback.
What are the best ways for employees to receive feedback?
If you look at feedback as a negative event, you will not grow in your organization. When you receive feedback, you should celebrate and welcome it as it can help you grow and improve. While it may make you nervous at first to hear feedback from peers and managers, you should look at it as a gift.
Companies that regularly solicit feedback have 14.9% lower turnover rates. There is a substantial correlation between feedback and engagement. Make sure you use the weekly one-on-one meetings to provide your staff with feedback that will help them advance their careers and abilities. Compared to 18% of employees with low engagement, 43% of highly involved employees receive feedback at least once every week.
Below are some ways for employees to receive feedback:
Ask for feedback: It is crucial to ask for feedback after you deliver a project. It is even more important to ask for it if you are new to the team or if it is a new position for you. Unless you ask for it, your managers and co-workers may not know your comfort level concerning feedback. You may end up receiving only yearly feedback in the annual feedback period. When you ask for feedback, you tell your team members and managers that you are open to feedback - negative or positive.
Never take feedback personally: Most employees get defensive when it comes to receiving feedback, especially when it is negative. You are entitled to respond to criticism that is being shared. However, avoid signs of defensiveness as it implies excuse-making. For example, your manager gives you feedback related to your delivery of the last project. Instead of saying that you tried, but it did not work, or you did not have enough time, you can say something like - 'That is a great idea, next time, I will try my best to make it happen.'
Take note: If you really need to improve, you must track all the feedback you receive. You can do that by writing it in a journal or recording it on your computer. It allows you to compare feedback as you grow as an employee. If the feedback does not change over time, it means, you need to change your action plan as your existing improvement plan is ineffective. With a feedback log, you clearly know what points you have improved and what you still need improvement.
Follow up: Once you receive feedback, it can help you if you can tell your managers (if they work closely with you) your action plan for improvement. It will also ensure that they assist you to improve in whatever way it is possible. It will also show that you appreciate the feedback and also are open to more feedback in the future.
If you can incorporate the above points in your professional journey, you will surely grow in your organization and will turn out to be a valuable asset for the company. When an individual improves through feedback, it sends a positive message among other employees, especially your team members, and it ultimately leads to overall team improvement. The bottom line is that performance improvement is effective with constructive feedback.