Managing Two-Way Feedback
Managing two-way feedback
Recently we did a webinar on the Art of Onboarding, one of the elements we discussed was 2-way feedback.
This is a great tool to get honest input on how everyone is doing and to clarify expectations of all parties.
The question is, how do you handle receiving negative feedback from your employees and how do you best send feedback on growth opportunities to them?
Managing the feedback process is a critical factor in strong leadership and there are a few key things to remember.
Be thoughtful -Regardless of intention and topic, most people will take feedback personally. Be sure to recognize that when an employee is sharing their needs, experience and input, that you are seeing it as an opportunity for both you and the organization to grow and engage staff, not as a personal attack. We all come to the table with a variety of styles, experiences and opinions- this makes for a dynamic and engaging team- embrace and recognize those differences and accommodate them where you can.
The reverse is also true, when you are giving feedback, remember that it may be taken personally so be sure to pose your comments in a constructive, expectation and behaviour based way- saying things that may appear to be hurtful, personality based or even insulting will only cause further issues.
Prepare- Be aware of your surroundings and timing. Think about things like “turf” , eavesdroppers and what else has transpired or will transpire throughout that day. Even more important in the preparation process is being sure that you are ready to hear honest feedback and that you are also prepared to address the issues that are brought forward. IF the issue is something that you can’t rectify, that is okay but be sure to tell them that they have been heard and what you will be doing with the information they have shared. Giving feedback to an employer can leave people feeling vulnerable and if there isn’t any action that follows your team may go silent and that means you are losing valuable insight and engagement.
Follow Up- Regardless of who is giving and who is receiving the feedback, always follow up. Be sure that the follow up contains SMART information. Responding to an issue with specific, measurable, attainable (where appropriate), relevant information in a timely manner will help to ensure the flow of information going forward. Any easy example:
When an employee has indicated that their first week with the department has been hard because no one was expecting them, so they didn’t have full days of training or work you are obviously going to walk away from that discussion and evaluate the situation. When you get back to the employee later on you can use SMART information like this; “ Thanks for letting me know how your first week went, I just wanted to quickly follow up and let you know that because of your openness in how the process went we have re-evaluated our on-boarding process. Going forward we will be announcing all newcomers the Friday before they start so that everyone knows. I am hoping that this will begin next month when we have another new lot attendant starting. From your side, since I know you didn’t get a chance to put your best foot forward, I would like you to take the time to sit through their first day too so that you get a better experience and then let me know what still needs improving. Can we meet again ion the 10th?”
Yes, it really is that easy! As well, do not forget to follow up with any other people who are impacted. Involving other managers, department members and impacted staff is part of the follow up process and shows people that you are sincere when information is shared.
If you would like more detailed information or to find out how we can assist with advisory services and other related functions, you can reach us at firstname.lastname@example.org.