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Feedback – How appropriate that the word begins with feed. Study after study indicates that employees are hungry for feedback. Conversely, a low feedback diet comes with many side effects including: Disengagement, Loss of opportunities, and the ultimate price “loss of talent”.

Framing your feedback is critical, specially if its constructive in nature. Consider following these guidelines to help get you comfortable.

  1. Feedback should be specific and timely. (It doesn’t need to be immediate, but the sooner the better after the event has transpired)
  2. Feedback is not about the person, but about the behavior and its impact (this is a very important distinction both for the sender and the receiver)
  3. It needs to be in a private setting (if its constructive in nature) -Praise in public, critique in private.
There are hundreds of “Feedback Models” out there. The reality is that this is not a one-size-fits-all-deal. Feedback is situational just as your leadership stance. A useful guideline that will work with anyone (personally and professionally) is as follows:

Describe the specific behavior 

  1. “When you are consistently late…..”
  2. “When you respond with grace and politeness….”
  3. “When you proof that document twice….”
  4. “When you don’t respond to my emails….”

Describe the impact

  1. “We miss our deadlines and the customer loses faith in our service”
  2. “You elevate us in the process and demonstrate that patience in a heated exchange” goes a long way
  3. “The customer appreciates your due diligence and truly appreciates our relationship as an elite enterprise partner”
  4. “You miss important updates from my side, these updates are designed to help you and our customers.” 

Clarify Future Behavior

  1. “Please keep up the good work”
  2. “Could you alter that approach?”
  3. “Would you like to try it differently?”
  4. “What can you do differently next time?”
  5. “Can I have your commitment to start checking your email regularly?”

One cannot master delivering feedback by reading one blog post. Learning to deliver feedback takes practice and you only get better by doing it consistently, and learning from experience.

The onus of delivering feedback rests on your shoulders. The worst kind of feedback is no feedback at all

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