When should you give feedback?
August 20, 2013 Nancy Slessenger This entry was posted in Feedback, Improving Performance, Management Skills, Performance Management and tagged Feedback, Improving Performance. Bookmark the permalink.
Do you ever give feedback to people in your team? And if so, when?
Running a workshop yesterday I got the usual response to this question; people only give feedback when there are problems, and then they usually leave it as long as possible in the hope that things will get better on their own. If you do that you tend to end up in the unenviable situation of having to give quite unpleasant feedback to members of your team.
It’s like going to the dentist; the longer you delay, the worse it is.
But there are other easier and more effective ways of using feedback.
How to get really good results from feedback without the difficult bits
Have you ever thought of focusing on giving feedback to people when they have done things particularly well? And I don’t mean just saying, “That was great.” or “You are brilliant.” I mean some very specific feedback that properly identifies what they have done and why it has yielded the results it has.
If you have, you are in the minority, and that’s a shame, because it’s one of the easiest and cheapest ways to boost performance (and it helps morale too).
How to use feedback positively
Identify anything that goes better than usual
That could be all kinds of things, for example:
- You do it more quickly
- The results are better
- It’s cheaper
- You make more money
- The clients are happier than usual
Get your team together and ask them how it happened. Find out what was different. Discover who did what.
Think of yourself as your favourite detective and make sure you go into the detail and get all the evidence.
Identify why it happened. What was different? Why did people do what they did?
Work out how you can repeat it and make it the standard way that things are done.
Lastly – keeping looking for feedback opportunities
Get into the habit of doing this. Make sure your whole team is on the look out for things that go well. Make sure they follow this same procedure.
You can extend it to noticing what others in other areas do particularly well and finding out how they do it too. Then see what you can apply to your own area.
When I improved the productivity of a department by around 40% in a week and also reduced their failure rate from 25% to less than 5% this is the kind of process I used. I just picked all the best things that each individual did and stuck them together. None of it was my idea. And I explained to them all which bit each of them had added to the process.
The information had always been there, but no one had gathered it together.
Don’t trust me. Have a go at this yourself and see what results you get.
Feedback for the Faint-Hearted
How to give and get feedback that improves performance. Full of easy and effective ways to say what you need to say with plenty of examples.Price: $10.00Price: $8.34