Ironically, it often feels easier not to give feedback. For most people, whatever their role, the concern with what can be seen to be a confrontation is so much easier to delay, prevaricate with and – in many cases – simply put off altogether.
And that makes matters worse, almost every time.
Here are three ideas to help you get past giving feedback.
1. Be Fast and Frequent
When circumstances present themselves to give feedback, see it as a very positive opportunity. And then give that feedback, because it’s there for the value it can offer.
Giving feedback needs to be a regular activity, so that you begin to overcome the fear factor that so often comes with those much maligned words, ‘Would you like some feedback?’
The more you give feedback – not forgetting that it can so often simply be positive, without that negative sting in the tail – the more your people will learn to like it and be less defensive. Indeed, the goal we all seek as managers is where we add value by providing great feedback as a resource.
The better you give it soon after the event, such that it’s still relevant and fresh too, will be more effective than a few days later. Delaying says much about your level of self-esteem.
2. Make Feedback Two-Way
Being prepared to accept feedback means that you walk your own talk and your employees start to see the real reason behind feedback.
It’s actually there to help.
When we hear feedback, unless the language, trust and environment is perfect, it’s very easy to be defensive in response. When as employees, we see our boss able to receive feedback willingly, appreciate it and be seen to develop themselves too, we start to want some of that.
As managers, accepting and showing the changes we make when we receive it, means feedback starts to be seen as not the monster with which it is so often tarnished.
3. What Do They Think?
Giving feedback has a prior step. Ask people if they would like to give themselves feedback first, listen and acknowledge and then share yours too.
And remember, ensuring that you acknowledge their positives first, shows just how much you value them as individuals and helps encourage people to try a different approach in the future in those areas where they might be better.
Employees pretty much do 95+% of their roles really well, so showing them perspectives of the opportunities to be even better needs to reflect how good they are first.
Want more? For 10 top tips on Effective Feedback, checkout here