There’s no doubt about it, top performing companies are at the top because they consistently search for ways to make their best even better. How do they achieve this? By giving AND receiving feedback.
Effective feedback is beneficial to the giver, receiver and the company as a whole. You should consider feedback as valuable information that can be used to help make important decisions.
Research conducted by OfficeVibe, reinforces the importance of effective employee feedback:
39% of employees report that they don’t feel appreciated at work.
14.9% lower turnover rates in companies that implement regular feedback.
30 times more likely to make workers actively engaged at work when managers focus on employees’ strengths.
4/10 workers are actively disengaged when they get little or no feedback.
65% of employees said they wanted more feedback.
98% of employees will fail to be engaged when managers give little or no feedback.
Important reasons to give employees feedback
Feedback helps to create a personal connection between the company and its employees and this is likely to increase the level of engagement because employees feel more involved and connected to the company’s goals. It also helps to demonstrate that the company values their efforts and contributes to a sense of purpose and fulfilment at work.
When employees are performing to an acceptable standard, feedback helps to reinforce and embed best practice and ensure that the actions individuals take are aligned to the business’s goals.
Feedback creates an environment of learning and development and helps to develop existing strengths. It also helps to prevent employees from becoming demotivated, which can happen when they are not challenged or engaged at work and ensures that they continue to strive to improve their performance.
Giving feedback to employees helps to ensure that weaknesses in performance and behaviour are addressed and eliminated. Tackling performance and behavioural issues early is likely to prevent them from escalating and becoming more difficult to address.
Workplace relationships are often friendly and relaxed, and this is likely to create a good working environment. However, reminding employees of the company’s expectations of them can help them to focus on their work and remind them of the need to achieve their objectives.
Giving regular feedback to employees helps to develop a culture of conversation. This encourages employees to approach their line manager when they have a problem or concern, or when they have ideas about improvements to processes and practices. Where employees feel comfortable about voicing their concerns, they are likely to feel a strong sense of engagement and that they have a shared purpose with the company.
Feedback helps employees to prioritise their tasks. It can help them to focus on the aspects of their role that are important to organisational success and stop them wasting time and effort on unnecessary tasks.
Top tips when giving feedback
Establish a culture of regular 2-way feedback
Day-to-day feedback is more effective than doing it on an infrequent basis.
Give day-to-day praise
Be specific and make the moment special. Ensure the conversation is constructive rather than negative. Delivering something negative in a positive way will give the employee a greater sense of purpose.
Make your feedback personal
Do it face-to-face, rather than via email (you could follow up with an email if you think written guidance may be helpful). Give the employee your full attention!
Make sure your feedback is timely
Do it at the earliest opportunity, while the event is still fresh and relevant.
Be prepared for an emotional reaction
Sometimes an employee may feel excited or pleased when they receive praise, or angry or resentful on receiving criticism, particularly where the employee does not understand why he or she is being criticised.
What about receiving feedback from employees?
I would recommend encouraging your employees to give you feedback on business issues and on their performance. You may want to consider employees giving you feedback in one-to-one sessions or in team meetings.
There are a few good reasons why it is important for employees to have the opportunity to give feedback to their line manager.
Encouraging employees to give feedback shows that the manager is prepared to listen, learn and improve how they work, which can help to motivate employees.
When a line manager receives feedback in an appropriate manner, this is likely to encourage employees to receive feedback appropriately themselves.
Line managers who encourage their team members to give feedback are likely to create a more constructive environment in which team members feel confident to suggest improvements or raise queries. Employees often have more detailed knowledge than their manager of day-to-day processes and practices, and their suggestions can lead to business improvement and success.
Receiving feedback – Dos and don’ts
Do encourage employees to give feedback on your performance and organisational processes and practices.
Do listen to what employees say.
Do thank an employee for their comments.
Do reflect on what the employee has said to determine where you can make improvements.
Do accept what the employee says as a valuable insight into how others see you.
Don’t become defensive or seek to justify yourself.
Part of a bigger picture
Giving and receiving feedback is one element of effective performance management. If you need help to create a performance management system that is tailored to suit your business, please get in touch – we’d love to hear from you.
If you are concerned or have any questions about performance management (inc. giving and receiving feedback) or any other HR related matter please contact me, Natalie Perks, at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01463 262428