Effective communication is key in all paths of business, and an incredibly important part of this is constructive feedback. However, with business life being very busy, this can naturally fall to the bottom of the priority list.
Thankfully, more companies are realising the value it has to both their staff and their business. Here at Bright Direction, we’ve detailed why it’s so worthwhile, along with some proven successful methods of giving feedback.
How can constructive feedback improve performance?
If your assessment of staff isn’t communicated to them, then they won’t truly know whether the work they’re carrying out is being done so in the correct manner. By discussing it, they will be aware of their performance and how they can improve.
In turn, this will allow them to feel much more confident in their work. The constructive feedback will provide them with resources to achieve goals set, as well as the belief that they can do so too. Such feedback helps employees to make the necessary changes to accelerate them towards accomplishing their targets.
How does it improve performance?
Once constructive feedback has been provided, staff will have the power to reach their full potential. This will encourage productivity as they will recognise how to effectively reach goals, deal with any challenges and feel motivated at the same time.
Having the ability to complete their work to a better level will raise both individual and team morale as efficiency will be increased, and workplace stress reduced. Their morale will also be elevated as constructive feedback isn’t only associated with employee motivation, but satisfaction, career development and retention as well.
The assessment will prove valuable providing there’s a feedback loop created. The feedback should be part of a specific process, just like other aspects of your business. Without it, staff could become disheartened, especially if they have previously been told their performance wasn’t up to standard. Even if it’s positive, a lack of feedback could discourage them. Ideally, it will be an everyday part of your organisation culture.
The difference between constructive feedback and destructive feedback
The main difference between constructive and destructive feedback is the way in which it is communicated to employees. Destructive assessments include feedback that belittles or embarrasses the employee, or comments on ideas that cause them to be ceased, rather than improved.
Often destructive feedback occurs because the person delivering it hasn’t thoroughly thought out how to do so. Because it can be incredibly easy to toe the line between constructive and destructive feedback, you should plan what to say beforehand. As a basic rule of thumb, valuable opinions are intended to help the receiver. They will be educational and allow them to better themselves. On top of these things, constructive comments are based on valid facts – but don’t necessarily have to be positive.
What are the elements of valuable feedback?
By knowing the effective methods of giving feedback, you can be a manager who provides constructive rather than destructive assessments. Firstly, ensure the comments are precise and aren’t associated with judgment. It’s key to clearly distinguish between individuals, actions and outcomes. Whilst it’s important that any feedback doesn’t come across as a personal attack, it still needs to be individual. If the assessment is only collective, it can’t truly be effective – the person won’t know what exactly they are doing that’s right or how to improve upon their own actions.
The feedback may not necessarily be positive, but it can still be constructed in this way. Knowing how to give constructive criticism is to offer feedback that’s prescriptive and actionable. It should show that you have trust in your team and their abilities.
Lastly, guarantee a two-sided conversation. Give them room for input, particularly if you’re providing constructive criticism. Allow them the opportunity to offer any reasoning behind a lack of performance, as well as their own thoughts to you.
Constructive feedback isn’t the easiest thing to get to grips with, especially if you’ve not received any training in it. That’s why we here at Bright Direction Training offer Leadership and Management apprenticeships that enable managers to effectively communicate with their team. With units such as building relationships and problem-solving in addition to communication, managers will have all the tools they need to succeed.
All the apprenticeship courses we offer are aligned with ILM qualifications. To find out more information about them, give us a call on 01204 859 859, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, or fill out our contact form here.