5 Tips on How to Give Feedback to Employees

5 Tips on How to Give Feedback to Employees

Feedback plays a critical part in employee engagement, performance, and ultimately, retention. The bond between managers and employees is strengthened by feedback and communication, allowing the two people to build loyalty, trust, and respect.

While delivering feedback to your team members isn’t always comfortable, it comes with the responsibility of managing people. The key factor to delivering effective feedback is to make sure your feedback is constructive, not critical. 

Here are five tips on how to give feedback to employees.

Be Transparent & Specific

Employee feedback should be goal oriented, transparent, and direct. Providing vague comments, such as, “You need to be more efficient,” or “I need to see more effort,” leave employees without actionable takeaways. 

Be transparent on what you need from your employee and offer support on how they can apply the feedback. Provide specific steps or examples to motivate your employees to deliver the change you wish to see. Position yourself to be empathetic but crystal clear by saying what you mean in a diplomatic yet straightforward way.

Don’t Avoid Difficult Conversations

Sweeping difficult problems under the rug is an easy way to avoid an uncomfortable conversation, but rarely will the problem fix itself untouched. Instead, managers should be prepared to face these conversations head on.

The more prepared you are, the better outcome you can expect. Don’t rely solely on your observations; instead find proof to support your concerns. By coming prepared for these difficult conversations you can outline the exact changes that need to be made.

As a business leader, you are also a coach. It’s up to you to provide everything your employees need to succeed in their role.

Provide Ongoing Feedback

Feedback isn’t a once-a-year or once-a-quarter event. Feedback should happen consistently for an effective employee and manager relationship. Encourage managers to meet weekly or bi-weekly with their direct reports to give, receive, and act on feedback.

The “ongoing feedback” approach lets managers keep pace with change by monitoring performance, reassessing goals, and discussing strategies. More frequent one-on-one meetings actually end up saving managers time by providing a forum to address and resolve problems before they become larger issues.

With ongoing feedback, employees won’t feel blindsided when something arises during a performance review. Ongoing feedback also gives managers time to focus on the future of the employee’s performance rather than events of the past.

Two-Way Street

Spending your time lecturing someone on how they should improve will not fix the issue. Managers should go into these conversations with an element of respect, and allow an open floor for the employees to address their own concerns.

Let your employee respond to the feedback and allow them the opportunity to ask any follow up questions. Getting feedback from employees not only helps managers grow, but also makes employees feel more comfortable.

Follow Up

The main purpose of feedback is to improve performance. Make sure to follow up with your employee and recognize them when you see improvements. This creates trust in the relationship and shows your dedication to their personal development.

Remember to approach your conversations with honesty and genuine concern for your employees’ wellbeing and growth. With this mindset, you will foster employee trust and create a better employee-manager relationship. Learn about Namely's talent management system.

To learn more about how you can set your employees up for success, check out our Tips, Tricks & Strategies for Strengthening the Manager-Employee Relationship.

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