4 Tips for Providing Useful and Effective Feedback

Most employees want to hear how they can improve at work — as long as that feedback is delivered correctly. Unfortunately, only 26% of employees strongly agree that the feedback they receive at work is helpful.

This means that most managers are failing at providing useful feedback. However, if you think about how you’ve become so good at the things you excel at, it’s likely that receiving feedback aided in improving your performance. 

Indeed, 94% of people agree that corrective feedback improves their performance when presented well. So, how can you ensure your feedback is delivered directly, usefully and respectfully? Try a few of these tips. 

Ask for feedback before giving it. 

Regularly asking for feedback yourself creates a culture of improvement and helps others realize that you giving feedback is your attempt to bring them up, not put them down. Use every opportunity to ask for feedback on meetings and other areas of your leadership. This shows you are leading from the front. 

Ask for clarification.

At times, your perspective of a situation may not be 100% correct. Therefore, when you give feedback, state what you’re observing and ask the other person for their perspective to get all the facts on the table. If you allow others the opportunity to share additional facts before saying your piece, you may be able to avoid jumping to conclusions or saying things that don’t need to be said.

Share observations, not conclusions. 

Most feedback methods encourage managers to prepare what’s going to be said. However, this is one of the main reasons why feedback so often fails. Feedback is a dialogue; not a prescription. Make sure both sides of the table are heard and don’t try to have a monopoly on the truth.

Focus on improving for the future.

The most useful feedback should be focused on the future. No matter how the conversation unfolds, try to make sure that it all comes back around to how you can both do things differently to produce better outcomes.