According to a Havard Business Review study, 57% of respondents from a survey of 900 global employees prefer constructive feedback. An OfficeVibe study confirms that 98% of employees become less engaged when their superiors give little to no feedback.
Giving constructive feedback has tons of benefits when done right. It keeps employees on track and helps boost their morale. Constructive feedback also impacts a company’s ROI and lowers employee churn significantly.
But, it can be a hurdle pulling this off when you don’t know how to go about it. When done poorly, employees can feel attacked, hurt, and demotivated. You don’t want it to come to that!
The good news is that you can learn and implement how to give constructive feedback. That’s why we’ve put together this guide. So, let’s get to it!
What is Constructive Feedback?
First things first! What is constructive feedback? Simply put, constructive feedback is supportive criticism whose goal is to influence positive behavioral change in an individual. It’s usually characterized by comments, pieces of advice, or suggestions to improve performance.
When giving constructive feedback, the rule of thumb is to emphasize the work rather than attacking individuals. This way, you’re assured your efforts will bear fruits.
Why Constructive Feedback is Important
Overall, constructive feedback is crucial because it facilitates employees’ personal and professional growth. Below is a comprehensive breakdown of why constructive feedback is important!
Constructive feedback creates a conducive work environment and encourages collaboration between employees and their seniors and amongst themselves. You’ll want to establish a friendly environment where people can give and take feedback freely.
This way, you’re guaranteed a great teamwork relationship between you and your employees and amongst themselves.
Employes steer businesses in the right direction to achieve the intended goals and objectives. But this is only attainable when their productivity is top-notch. One sure way to realize your company goals and targets is by boosting employee productivity.
There are several ways to boost employee productivity. But, none comes close to giving constructive feedback since it directly affects employees’ psychology. Your employees will know what’s wrong with their work and how to improve through constructive criticism.
This flattens their learning curve, especially for complex tasks. More importantly, allowing constructive feedback in the company creates a comfortable work environment. Your employees can ask specific questions and share opinions freely.
Improves Employee Morale
Employee morale goes a long way because it directly affects their productivity and your company’s sales and revenue. No doubt, giving constructive feedback is the sure way to improve your employees’ morale.
Constructive feedback acknowledges and appreciates the good an employee has done and points out what’s unsatisfactory positively. This way, the employee doesn’t feel attacked, hurt, and demoralized.
Constructive Feedback Examples in Manufacturing, Construction, Logistics, and Sales
You already know what constructive feedback is and why it matters. Here are a few examples of great constructive feedback you can apply in the manufacturing, construction, logistics, and sales industries.
Example 1: When an Employee is Disengaged, and Less Motivated to Work
“I have realized you aren’t as motivated to do work as before. If you have reasons why you feel this way, I would love to hear about them. It would be much better if we occasionally met to check in on everything.”
Example 2: Poor Communication Skills
“You haven’t kept me informed about your project. Honestly, I’m clueless about what’s happening, and I’d love for you to communicate with me more. Can we plan to have a 15-minute call every Wednesday with progress updates, please?”
Example 3: When an Employee is Unresponsive
“The deadline is approaching, and I’ve realized that you aren’t spending extra time helping out with the project. I’d like to see a little more effort from you to help us complete the project before the due date.”
Example 4: When an Employee’s Performance is Dwindling
You have been an outstanding employee since you joined our company. However, your submissions haven’t been satisfactory over the past two months. After working with you for several months, I know your abilities, and your recent performance doesn’t reflect it. Please let me know if any challenges affect your performance so that the rest of the team and I can help.”
Example 5: When an Employee Reports Late to Work without Notice
I noticed you came to work late today. Coming late to work means working fewer hours than required, and I’m worried that can affect your productivity and targets. It would be great to know why you’re late and if there is anything I can do to help you arrive at work on time.”
How to Deliver Constructive Feedback
Giving feedback can either make or break your team. So, you want to ensure you get it right from the word go. The above examples are sufficient to point you in the right direction.
But it will be great to know how to deliver constructive feedback by yourself. Below are some cool and actionable tips to consider!
1. Consider the Timing and Location of Feedback
Location is crucial when giving feedback, especially when it’s not pleasant. You can give positive feedback when everyone is present because it elevates an employee’s status and self-esteem.
On the other hand, negative feedback is sensitive and can break an employee when delivered poorly. This is why you want to deliver negative feedback at a one-on-one meeting in a private location. A closed office setup is a great example.
You also want to give feedback on time when you have clear reference points. If an incident occurs in the morning, it’s best to give feedback by evening or early the next day. Waiting unnecessarily longer only makes the feedback less effective!
2. Use a Friendly Tone when Delivering the Feedback
The right tone and delivery is arguably the most important consideration when giving constructive feedback. Using the right tone gives your employees an impression that you care and respect them.
This is why you want to remain positive. Lead the feedback by starting with what they’re already doing right. This sends the right signals to their mind and prevents possible negative reactions when you drop the criticism.
Next, you want to be direct, specific, and clear. It’s not good to beat about the bush when you intend to give constructive feedback. Instead, experts recommend you hit the nail on the head and be specific on what you’re giving feedback for.
3. Allow the Recipient to Respond
We live in a free world and would not like the idea of someone dictating us. The same is true for your employees. It’s good you want to point out what they’re not doing right. But what’s their side of the story?
It’s essential to hear their response before jumping to conclusions. So, as you give your feedback, also lend them an ear to get an explanation. This way, they’ll feel appreciated, and working on your recommendations won’t be an issue.
4. Apply Emotional Intelligence
While you don’t want to dilly-dally when giving feedback, it’s crucial to consider your emotional state. For example, giving feedback when angry can backfire on you when you let emotions control your actions.
It’s best to take some time and think about the feedback you’re about to give and the possible reactions. Overall, you should apply emotional intelligence to get your desired results when giving feedback.
5. Focus on Solutions and not Blame
It’s normal to blame your employees and juniors, especially when angry. But, honestly, that’s not going to help anyone. Instead, you should focus on solutions for your company’s and employees’ well-being.
The best way to approach it is to involve your employees in finding feasible solutions. This is opposed to imposing your thoughts on them and can yield remarkable results.
Giving constructive feedback is crucial in any work environment. When done right, it boosts employees’ morale, encourages collaboration, boosts productivity, and impacts sales and revenue.
But here’s the kicker! Getting started can be daunting when you don’t know what to do. The good news is that you can turn to experts for help. This is where Proaction International coaches come to the rescue. So, feel free to contact us for assistance.