One of the prime qualities of a great manager is to bring the best potential out of the subordinates. The key to refining one’s performance is to evaluate and take suggestions that encourage improvement in the performance. As per statistics, almost 83% of the employees appreciate feedback, be it positive or negative. But delivering criticism without being too imposing or rude is a tricky task that every manager experiences occasionally. Conveying constructive criticism in a clear, concise, and indicative manner can go a long way in building a rapport with subordinates while improving their performances and ultimately boosting the company’s overall performance as well. After all, 43% of employees who receive regular feedback are highly engaged at work.
What Is Employee Feedback?
In simple words, the process of giving suggestions and acknowledgments that could be used to change an employee’s performance for the better is known as employee feedback.
Most corporate setups follow periodical performance assessment policies to keep track of their employees’ participation and contributions. This is carried forth by either the manager or the HR department.
Importance of Employee Feedback
Employee feedback can play a vital role in clarifying mistakes, improving work ethics, fortifying employee-employer relationships, and induces a positive learning curve. Statistics suggest that more than 69% of employees say that they would put in more effort if they received proper feedback.
This simple gesture can make the employee feel seen, valued, and a part of the company. It increases a sense of accountability and employee engagement. Only 13% of the world’s employees are properly engaged with their jobs. Research has suggested that better-engaged employees provide better performance and input in favor of the company. As a matter of fact, almost 69% of the employees are likely to work harder when their efforts are better recognized.
Enterprises also benefit greatly by improving the standards of their workforce’s operations. It can help narrow down harder working and more talented individuals that can be an asset to the company while filtering out the lesser involved individuals as soon as possible.
Important aspects of employee feedback?
Constructive criticism is the backbone of employee feedback. Six important components that must feature in employee feedback are:
- Acknowledgment – Letting the employee know that their actions are observed by recognizing small wins, improvements, minor setbacks, etc., can personalize the review. It also makes them feel accepted as part of the team.
- Professionalism – Maintaining an official yet casual tone reminds the employee of their obligations and duties to the company. It makes them take the job seriously.
- Support – Ensuring that an employee views the manager as a part of the same team can help them be more accepting of criticism. It is essential to remind them that the fundamental purpose of the review is to support employee development and, in the process, the company’s growth as well.
- Discuss – Encourage dialogue as it allows the employee to feel heard and validated instead of feeling like they are being disciplined.
- Respect – Posing a humble and respectful tone helps the employee accept the criticism better, without feeling too intimidated or threatened by the power dynamics in the team.
- Suggest – Feedback is incomplete when only the problems are pointed out, and no solutions are suggested. Feedback can comprise of suggestions and advice on a solution that can lead to improvement.
Delivering Effective Employee Feedback: Easy to follow Examples
Mentioning the small changes and improvements, minor milestones that employees have showcased can get a much more dedicated involvement from them. Employees appreciate their superiors taking an interest in their endeavors and paying attention to them. It also lets them know that they can turn to the employer to better their performance as well.
Feedback and assessment can concern both positive and negative events. There is no standard way to communicate the subordinates’ performance. Although, here are some common circumstances that every team experiences, along with examples of feedback that can be shared:
1. You notice an employee performing well
“Your way of dealing with prospective clients in the conference was inspiring. Your ease in striking a chord with clients is a true talent. I hope we see more of this side of you in our future client meetings.”
2. You acknowledge the extra effort taken by the employee
“I was very impressed by the way you dealt with our foreign associates during the business dinner. It is evident that you did put some extra effort into homework to understand our clients better. It really helped in making a good connection. I appreciate your efforts in making sure we seal this deal. Hope to see such dedication in all your future endeavors.”
3. You want to encourage certain assets of an employee
“Your consistent punctuality has been an inspiration for so many other employees here. I appreciate your commitment to the job and for setting a good example. It will be a pleasure to see you reach great heights due to this trait of yours.”
4. You want to motivate an employee
“You’ve been delivering promising performance in the past months, and I noticed a consistent growth in your numbers. You have quickly adapted to our company’s needs, and your evolution has been impressive here. Let me know if there is anything I can do to support this performance.”
5. You want to specify an employee’s contribution
“I’m aware that the PPT presentation was a teamwork job, but I’m particularly stunned by the visuals and design templates of the PPT. I hope you can carry this creative skill in all our project presentations. I’m sure it will be an asset in impressing prospective clients.”
6. You want to encourage an employee who can use it
“I’m glad to see you putting in so much effort for this project. But I feel like you’re capable of bringing so much more to this project. I’ve seen your data. It was very promising. You just need to take the lead with a little more confidence. I’m sure you’ll surprise yourself with the results. Good luck!”
7. You find an employee rising to a challenge
“I’m aware that this project was to be completed at a minimal budget and under a serious time crunch. But I’m very happy with how efficiently you’ve handled the situation. These results are very impressive for someone who has taken on their first project lead. I knew it was a challenge, but you’ve excelled in it on all fronts. Keep up the good work.”
8. Your employee has performed exceptionally well
“Your sales figures have peaked beyond our estimated numbers. This is a praiseworthy effort and an inspiration especially coming from one of our younger candidates. If you manage to keep up this sale record till the end of the month, I’m sure you can secure your employee of the month incentive. Hoping to see you perform true to your potential.”
9. You want to understand the decline in an employee’s performance
“I have noticed a sudden stoop in your sales figures in the past 3 months. You’re one of our star sales reps and have had an excellent record in the past. I’m not sure what exactly is bothering you in these 3 months. But I’m sure you can get things back on track with a little more effort. If there’s any way I can help in assisting or any advice to get things more sorted, feel free to approach me.”
10. You want to suggest a reprioritization in employee’s tasks
“I am sure that the high-profile client that you’ve been after is essential to our company. But I did notice you falling behind schedule in your monthly quotas. I suggest that you regroup your focus and try to catch up on your monthly tasks before pursuing the next client.”
11. You need to acknowledge a disruptive behavior of an employee
“I have noticed you spending too much time in the cafeteria with the other employees every day. The extension of the break time has affected the work performance of all our employees. It would help your work and that of others if you could refrain from taking longer breaks.
12. You notice one employee dominating the others
“I’m sure that your opinions are valid and supportive of our project. But sometimes your enthusiasm is not shared by other employees, and hence their opinions are often overlooked. If you could practice more to allow more opportunities for employees to express themselves, it’ll help us get a more productive group discussion.”
13. You have an employee who fails to meet the deadlines
“I’m noticing frequent delays in your submissions. You need to work on becoming more professional in this sector. It’ll help you greatly in the future in all aspects of your career and life. We expect on-time submissions. So, if you could try to keep up with the deadlines, it would be appreciated.”
14. You have an employee not performing up to their full potential
“I have noticed the features of your projects from before. They’ve shown tremendous potential. But you often tend to not put the required effort into completing these projects. I see potential. I hope you can use it. You will be impressed by how well you can carry this.”
15. An employee is reluctant to participate in teamwork
“I have noticed that your contribution to this project has not been as defined as the others. I agree that the overall outcome is impressive as a team. But I would love to see your individual participation shine through. I hope to see more of your contributions in the next project.”
In a nutshell...
You must remember that feedback does not necessarily have to be encouraging and positive at all times. Sometimes when employees are steering away from company policies or are not meeting expected results, it comes upon the manager to remind them about their responsibilities and the consequences that they face if they fail to meet those responsibilities. Striking a balance between positive and negative feedback is essential for a manager to get the best results from all employees.