GIVING TOUGH FEEDBACK TO HELP OTHERS GROW
Feedback or constructive criticism to do with work/career is important for a person’s growth trajectory. Everyone at some point in their life has received the same from a supervisor/manager/leader. It could pertain to any aspect of a person’s job profile, attitude and so on. Feedback, especially tough feedback is hard to accept/swallow by the person at the receiving end and it can lead to a whole range of repercussions on the person who is facing the brunt of it. It is in this context that tone & tenor of the person giving the feedback that makes the difference.
Here are some useful tips on giving tough feedback:
As the manager/supervisor, it is incumbent upon you to set the mood and tone for the feedback session. Begin the conversation with an opening talk on the recipient’s value in the firm and is important for the growth & future plans of the business. A positive environment needs to be created at the very outset. This enables the recipient of the criticism to be amenable and less hostile from the very beginning.
Create a growth mindset. It means that intelligence & abilities can be fostered over time. Enforce the belief that the recipient can turn things around with dedication, effort, and so on. Establish the feeling that the tough feedback is not to demotivate or firing from the job, but to develop the person’s skills/attitude etc so that they become an asset in the company’s growth plans.
Giving feedback to employees within the company should be a regular practice as part of the company culture. This way there is less stress when someone is informed that they are going to be reviewed etc.
Balance the negative feedback with the positive. Don’t be all harsh. Give positive concrete feedback on the person so that it acts as a great balancing tool. This makes the other person feel that the company is invested in him/her and they care & appreciate their contributions.
Along with giving tough feedback, don’t forget to add measures/steps that can be taken to rectify the situation, if it’s possible.
The feedback or tough feedback has to be fair, objective, and direct. Thus, the element or the feeling in the recipient that he/she is being unfairly targeted etc is removed from the scene.
Being a company owner/manager/leader is tough and involves taking tough decisions & giving tough feedback. It can take a toll on the mental and physical toll on both parties. Therefore, adequate preparation on part of the person giving tough feedback is very important to lay the ground for healthy two – way communication. We hope that the above tips will help you in giving feedback to your colleagues as effectively & gently as possible. More power to you and to all of us.