She knew she could be doing better, but wasn’t quite sure what was getting in her way. The meeting began as scheduled with a review of the numbers and a spotlight on the key offenders…her worst fears now confirmed, Mary left feeling deflated and even less engaged to do something about it.
If you want your employees to not only listen to, but take in and do something productive with your feedback, then set it up that way. Create a safe environment to keep your feedback objective and supportive in.
In a culture that embraces the giving and receiving of feedback, all feedback is perceived as good and ripe with helpful lessons. Experiential based team building exercises will help Mary learn how to let down her guard and be vulnerable in the safe environment you have created for her to learn in.
Keep feedback objective. Don’t make it personal by passing judgment and making assumptions with thoughts or statements like…”Mary, you aren’t trying hard enough”, or “What’s wrong with you Mary”? Be mindful of how you might be embellishing or exaggerating the feedback with your own emotional opinions.
Ask Mary if she agrees. A simple confirmation that she sees what you are seeing will set the stage for responsibility and willingness to show up and for a conversation to take place that helps Mary find and remove what is getting in her way.
This season, give your employees the gift of healthy feedback skills. I promise it will come back to you many times over.
Clint Best is a business coach and the founder of Kaizen Business Coaching in Kelowna, BC. Clint has been guiding forward thinking business owners through change and growth since 2002.