Many people find it difficult to be on the receiving end of constructive criticism. It can feel like an attack—especially if it isn’t delivered thoughtfully and with empathy.
We can’t stress enough how important it is to mentally reframe corrective action as an opportunity for continuous growth and improvement. As an employee makes performance adjustments based on feedback, their performance reviews/ratings will increase (not to mention job satisfaction!). When an employee can effectively process corrective feedback, they will be happier and more productive.
Here are a few practices that you can share with your team from Forbes.com:
1) Actively listen. Repeat and affirm what you’ve heard. This gives the brain time to process without becoming defensive. Body language is also a component of active listening. Check your posture. Are your arms folded? If so, relax your arms and maintain good eye contact.
2) Thoughtfully consider the feedback given to you. Avoid quickly rejecting or accepting the person and take your time to evaluate the information. Consider the impact of the requested change. Reflect on how frequently you receive similar feedback from other coworkers or in other environments, i.e., at home.
3) Remain open…ask followup questions using the start, stop, continue format. Begin by asking, “What is something that I am not doing that you would like me to start doing?”. Next ask, “What is something that I am doing that you would like me to stop doing?”. Finally ask, “What is something that I am doing that you would like me to continue doing?”.
Take these tips into your next feedback session and leave with clear understanding and amazing opportunities for improvement.
Share your best practices for receiving corrective feedback in the comments below. Make it a great day!
Some leaders dread offering constructive criticism to employees because at times, no matter how positive their delivery, oftentimes, it is received negatively. Employees may feel embarrassed, ashamed, low and like they have a target on their back.
Let’s face it, none of us want to be perceived as a staunch critic but when carried out with empathy, constructive criticism has tremendous value.
Offer constructive criticism as feedback by explaining one of the best ways to grow is to identify areas of improvement.
Employees who do not receive feedback become disengaged. On the other hand, providing strength focused feedback engages employees and engaged employees are more productive.
Ideas for Best Practices:
1) Make feedback timely and don’t make it personal. Feedback is most effective when delivered immediately so that the employee can easily recall what occurred. Be mindful to allow a cool down period if emotions are elevated. Remember, when executed poorly, constructive criticism comes across award and accusatory.
2) Opt for an authentic approach using specific and supportive language. Avoid vague and judgmental language.
4) Frame the feedback with positive intentions. Say something like, “I know you’ll offer great information in your speech and I want to make sure the audience receives all of it. So let’s think of ways to increase your eye contact and project your voice.”.
By shifting your perspective, it will build employee morale and productivity.
Give us your feedback and share the method that is most effective for you. Whatever you do, make it a great day!
Your company’s growth and profitability can catapult to new levels and a lot of it has to do with how much your employees trust your leadership.
According to an article in The Harvard Business Review, employees who trust their leaders tend to be more productive. The article suggests that trust is linked to oxytocin levels in the brain, therefore, employees are happier and communicate more effectively with colleagues and management. This may have a connection to increased productivity and profits.
Points to ponder:
1) Transparency is key. Employees seek to be aware of what is real and true. Besides the need for job security and career advancement opportunities, employees want to be part of a workplace culture that puts a premium on delivering the truth. For example, employees want to know how management perceives the effectiveness of their work performance because it allows them to make decisions based on facts and not assumptions about how they want to navigate their company career.
2) Do as you say. Discussing company core values and expectations in monthly meetings is important and employees expect leaders to model those values—consistently.
3) Be vulnerable. Don’t be afraid to admit you don’t have all of the answers and that you’re not perfect. Become comfortable with being uncomfortable so that you can build workplace relationships as you build the business. Be willing to share childhood family dynamic(s) that influenced your adult values.
4) Avoid micromanagement. This is key for building trust and developing strong workplace relationships. Also, less micromanaging means less stress for you and more accountability for your employees.
5) Understand how to be an effective listener. Sometimes the boldest thing a leader can do is listen and truly internalize the ideas/opinions of their staff.
6) Make employees feel appreciated and valued. Plan an annual retreat. Ask employees where they’d like to go and activities they want to do during the retreat. If it is successful, consider making it an annual event…it will be something for everyone to look forward to each year.
Bonus point: Authentic trust in work environments promote well-being and high morale. A lack of trust produces higher turnover and lower productivity.
Go out there and make it a great day !
Change. Some people love it; others despise it. Change in the workplace is inevitable. Let’s be clear, companies must evolve in order to remain competitive. So, how do employees learn to accept change AND thrive in the process?
From an employee’s perspective, it can be difficult to perceive opportunities that effective change brings to the company. Also, they may not fully understand how improvements can advance their career. Sometimes, employees focus on disruptions and their fears…nothing else.
To counteract negative feelings, encourage employees to look for the silver lining by identifying at least one positive outcome from the new way of doing things. For example, what new skill will they learn?
Focusing on self-care is essential to managing physical and emotional impacts of change in the workplace. Encourage employees to:
- Practice stress relieving techniques such as visualization, talking it out, meditation, etc.
- Flexibility is key. Help them identify ways to blend old practices with new ones
As a leader:
- Create a psychologically safe environment for them to offer input/feedback
- Be transparent
- Be consistent with updates
- Keep the lines of communication open…it fosters trust and inclusivity
- Create committees tasked with addressing the specifics on how the change will impact morale
Some people will be slower to adapt to change but that does not make them poor employees. Slow adapters are still valuable team members and must be afforded extra time to accept change. Employees and leaders working together position the company to thrive throughout the change process.
Talk to us in the comments below and remember…make it a great day!
Photo Courtesy of Pixaby
More than ever, companies are experimenting with new communication modalities. That said, as employees, especially Generation Z, are accustomed to communicating in real-time collaborative environments similar to those found within social media. Applications such as Yammer and Slack use social technologies to allow employees to share information internally. However, despite the emergence of new workplace communication applications email still reigns supreme. A survey conducted by the Public Relations Society of America found that 95% of companies use email as their primary mode of internal communication.
Here are five rules to live by:
- Use “Reply all” thoughtfully. Consider whether everyone on the list will benefit from your response. Take time to edit the recipient list to avoid inundating people with emails that don’t pertain to them. Nothing eats more time than reading unnecessary emails (not to mention the aggravation of it all).
- Check your tone. Never compose an email when you’re upset because it’s too easy to include harsh words and phraseology that you will likely regret later. Also, brevity can be a friend or foe…a sent message can be misconstrued as abrupt or not taken seriously enough. Before sending, put yourself in the recipient’s position and read your message aloud. Does it convey what you intended? Remember to include “please” and “thank you”. They are courtesies that will take you miles with the reader.
- Avoid fancy fonts. Use easy to read fonts such as Arial, or Times New Roman. It’s best to use size 11 or 12 point types.
- To prevent accidentally sending an incomplete email, insert the recipient address(es) just before you’re ready to send the message. That way you will catch typos and missing attachments.
- Every communication is not email compatible. If you require a quick response, make a phone call. Also, keep in mind that sensitive subjects such as job performance may be best suited for a face-to-face conversation.
When it’s all said and done, email is still an effective mode of communication and we must understand how to manage its usefulness and power. Young new hires should review this short video and add it to their Soft Skills arsenal.
For more information about email and telephone etiquette, type “business etiquette” in the blog search box on our website, www.elite-customer.com.
And now…go out there and make it a great day !!