Leveraging the power of employee feedback
Are you getting the best out of your team? Businesses thrive when employees feel valued, as this encourages productivity and loyalty. However, when it comes to giving employee feedback, many managers are surprisingly unsure of how to go about it.
Employee feedback must be delivered consistently and genuinely in order for it to positively inspire and contribute to the success of your employees and business. Whether you’re delivering positive feedback or constructive feedback, you have the power to reset, refocus and re-inspire.
Here we take a look at the different types of employee feedback and what you can do to make your employees feel more engaged and motivated.
The importance of feedback
All workers need guidance. If the whole team is to achieve its best results, everyone needs to know what they are doing right and wrong. However, a significant 72 per cent of businesses still only provide their employees with feedback once a year, in their annual performance reviews. Today’s employees want regular feedback so they can feel they are improving and being recognised for the work they do.
Research shows that meaningful employee feedback, whether negative or positive, is proven to increase employee engagement. According to a Gallup report, employees would prefer to receive negative feedback than no feedback at all. An employee who is ignored by a manager is twice as likely to be actively disengaged at work as an employee whose manager focuses on his or her weaknesses, according to the report. Likewise, receiving feedback from employees can offer valuable insights that can help leaders become stronger and more efficient in their roles.
But for feedback to be effective, it not only has to be given regularly, but it also has to be delivered in the right ways. With only 14.5 per cent of managers currently feeling they are effective at providing feedback, they must have tools at their disposal to help them get the best out of their team.
Turning negative feedback into constructive feedback
Turning negative feedback into constructive feedback is an art that every good leader must master. Constructive feedback is information-based and focused on specific issues. It should lead an employee towards desired outcomes without appearing judgemental or overly critical.
It is important to remember that negative feedback is powerful and packs a far stronger punch than positive feedback. As such, leaders need to be cognisant of its effects on an employee’s well-being and productivity. In many cases, negative feedback can make employees to become demotivated — 80 per cent of employees who feel they are being treated negatively will start looking for another job. This is why it’s so important for leaders to learn how to turn negative feedback into constructive feedback.
Constructive feedback examples
It’s important to note that every employee is different, so you will need to identify what style of communication will be best suited to your employee on a case by case basis.
Employees that respond best to a ‘softer’ touch will benefit from the “sandwich approach”, which is when criticism is slipped between two compliments. So instead of saying, “Jay, you harmed the project by not being a team player,” constructive feedback would be, “Jay, your contributions to this project were recognised, but you could be even more effective if you were prepared to listen more to other team members and take their views into account.”. This lets the employee know that they are not being given blanket criticism and also guides them towards the improvements they can make.
Whilst the “sandwich approach” may work well for some, other employees will see through it. Whatever praise you are offering will be diluted and by delaying the inevitable, it may cause your employee to become anxious. In this instance, take a more direct approach for example, “Jay, as we both know, things haven’t been running very smoothly lately. Let’s see if we can address the problem together.” Whilst you may not be sugar coating it, being direct will allow you to authentically deliver your feedback. The sooner it’s out, the sooner you and your employee can move on from the issue at hand.
Did you know employee feedback is often inaccurate?
One of the problems with not providing feedback regularly enough is that it can become subjective and inaccurate. Too many areas of an employee’s performance can be forgotten or overlooked when there is a large gap between performance reviews.
Rec Room, part of the EonX solution suite, is an employee engagement and communication platform that makes it easy to track employee performance in real-time. This data can then be used to provide accurate and timely feedback when you are conducting performance reviews, enabling your employees and your business to grow and thrive.
For instance, employers can leverage this solution when conducting learning and development initiatives. Here, management can refresh or teach new skills through online training modules, quizzes and polls that are all hosted within their own branded platform. Not only will this act as a learning modality, but every time an employee engages with the allocated modules, quizzes and polls, their results will be recorded. In fact, employers will have access to real-time data and analytics so if at any time they need to draw upon employee performance data to deliver feedback, they will have accurate information readily available.
The importance of positive feedback
Positive feedback is at the crux of employee recognition. In order to stay motivated, employees need to know that their efforts are being recognised. Research demonstrates that 63 per cent of employees feel they do not receive enough praise for the work they do, and 69 per cent would work harder if they were getting more recognition. Feeling recognised for their skills motivates employees to try harder in all areas of their performance.
Positive feedback examples
Employee recognition can be delivered in more than one way. Firstly, employees can be provided in person, verbal recognition. In this case, it is vital to keep your feedback positive and outcome-oriented. Tell your employees exactly what they have done right. For example, “You did a great job on this project. You were extremely organised and your team-working skills helped everybody to meet the deadline.”
Secondly, Rec Room can be used to provide consistent, personalised positive feedback in the form of communications, Rewards or Awards. This takes positive feedback and recognition to a new level, whereby it is embedded it into the organisational culture at large.
Using positive feedback to create a culture of recognition
A culture of recognition begins when positive feedback is no longer limited to when management has the time or energy to deliver it.
Rec Room allows you to instantly communicate with your employees, delivering Awards and Rewards for good work anytime, anywhere. This provides your team with continuous personalised, positive feedback that will keep them motivated and productive by making them feel more valued. This is one of the simple and yet most effective ways to ensure continued business success.
All types of communications that are delivered to employees via Rec Room, are fully customisable to suit your businesses goals, objectives and values. As we move deeper into the information age with rapid technological advancements, it’s imperative that businesses find ways to recognise their employees, whereby creating a desirable culture that will be with them, even when they’re working remotely.
If you would like more information about providing employee feedback, Rec Room or any of the other complementary EonX platforms, please contact us. Our team will be happy to help.