Being a manager in the 21st century is not at all a child's play. The work culture now demands the managers to lead the workforce by adopting multiple roles as a motivator, a mentor and a leader all at the same time. And one of the most important aspects of these roles is the ability and the will to deliver constructive feedback to the employees.
Feedbacks are an integral part of ensuring an efficient work culture. Frequently giving positive feedback not only impacts employee morale but also acts as a guide for them. Further, it sets the performance standard expected from the teams.
However, delivering constructive feedback is not as smooth as a hot knife through butter. There’s a very thin line that separates feedback from criticism and this is where most managers mess up.
The tone of delivering the feedback and the words you use may sometimes make your feedback sound more like a criticism which negatively affects the professional relationship.
That’s why to help you deliver the best constructive feedback to your employees, I present to you a few feedback samples with their relating scenarios.
But before beginning with the same here are some of the important points that you need to keep in mind while conveying constructive feedback to your employees.
Steps to Frame a Constructive Feedback
1. State your observation
Feedbacks are totally based on your observations as a professional. Deciphering these observations based on your managerial skills will further allow you to give precise and well-feedback. Also, when you state your observations clearly to the receiver it uplifts your persona as a mentor whom everyone can look up to. Thus, building confidence and camaraderie with your employees.
2. Pinpoint the areas for betterment
The thin line that lies between criticism and constructive feedback is defined with this very point. The main motive behind conveying constructive feedback is to help the other one realize his or her scope of betterment complemented with a bit of advice or a suggestion.
3. Keeping up an appreciative tone
Always ensure that you maintain an appreciative tone in your voice while conveying constructive feedback. The meaning behind the feedback is further amplified with the way you say them. Thus, your employees are more likely to pay attention and take your feedback positively when you deliver the same with appreciative tone.
4. Understand their concerns
Everyone has their own unique way of looking into things and problem-solving capabilities. And in this case, your employees are no different. Even they might have a different opinion about the assigned task. Therefore, you should always leave some space in between your feedback for your employees to express their views too.
Scenarios With Examples of Constructive Feedback
An employee who is hardworking but he or she is frequently late for office
The Feedback -
“Hi (Employee Name), I was going through everyone’s performance report from the last few months and I must say you have done a really great job. Also, I feel that you could achieve more every day by coming early and that way you’ll also be able to maintain a sound work-life balance.”
Bella has been constantly missing her project deadlines due to some jargons in her personal life
A positive employee feedback would be like -
“While taking a score of everyone’s progress I came to realise that your numbers aren’t matching up. Is there something that’s bothering you from getting your work done as per schedule?
Also, I got to know from your team members that you put in a lot of effort into your work and I sincerely appreciate it. But however, we all work in a competitive environment where the only thing that matters is being fast-paced both in your personal and professional endeavours. And going with the professional part I would suggest you to keep up with your end dates which will benefit both you and your team to stay ahead in the game.”
Travis keeps up with his great performance when working alone but he avoids being a team player
A Constructive performance review would be-
“I respect people who have the calibre to solve problems alone and move ahead. They learn from their experiences and I guess you’re one such person Travis.
However, I must also emphasize that everyone requires help at some point in time. It may be either you or someone else who might be needing an extra hand. And that is the perfect moment when you should exhibit your capabilities and help others out by sharing your knowledge. Also, at the same time, you can observe how others do their work and learn a few more things.
So, I would suggest you to actively take part in team-based projects and help your team excel with your capabilities added to it.”
Ruby makes up as one of the great team members in terms of performance but struggles with her communication skills
An encouraging feedback here would be-
“I have heard a lot of compliments about your work and I would like to appreciate you for the same. However, I noticed that you tend to remain silent most of the times even during your team meetings. I must say that I’m concerned with this observation of mine and would really like to know if you’re facing any difficulties out here.
My only advice here for you is to keep up your communication in whatever way you can. Even if you make mistakes you should keep on trying and also we are all here to help you out.”
An employee who frequently remains absent without any prior notice
A subtle constructive feedback here would be-
“Since the past few days, I have been noticing that you are seldom present in the workplace. May I know if you’re facing any problem that I can help you with?
I realise that every one of us has other responsibilities outside the workplace but we should also treat our jobs with equal importance. Also, you are missing out on a lot of information by being frequently out of work and I’m afraid that it might affect your overall performance which I don’t want to happen. And so, I would like to extend you my help in every way possible to help you overcome this issue.”
Max often ignores what his superiors say and makes silly mistakes while getting his job done
Constructive feedback here would be-
“As your manager, it’s my job is to keep everything and everyone organised in the workplace. Well, keeping things is comparatively easier but for keeping everyone on the same track I have to rely on you guys to understand each others concerns.
I respect the fact that everyone has their own way of doing things but at the same time, I would like to ask you not to overlook any meaningful feedback that comes your way, especially from people who are more experienced. We convey our feedback to help you guys keep up the good job. Also, we like receiving feedback from our employees too.
Having said the same, I hope that you would respect my words and help me promote positive behavior in our organisation.”
An employee has been struggling from the past few days with the assigned task
An example constructive feedback for your employee here-
“These days I noticed that you’re staying late in the office. Would you like to tell what is it that you’re working on?
Being your manager, I really like to see you all working hard to meet your goals. But I equally put emphasis on ensuring that you guys enjoy a sound work-life balance. That’s the reason I called upon you to share a few goal-setting tricks which I believe would help you out.”
As a manager, you are required to give feedback on your employee’s performance.
A positive employee feedback here would be-
“I’m glad that we finally caught up and as you already know I wanted to talk to you regarding your performance. During our conversation, I might point out both the positive and negative traits regarding your performance. Here, I want you to embrace your positive traits and learn from the negative feedback and then work on improving the concerned issues.
Speaking about your performance (Give your honest reviews on it).
The penultimate reason for which I’m delivering this constructive feedback is so that my employees feel confident about themselves. And going with the same I want to further strengthen the employee engagement efforts within our organisation.”
These were some of the scenarios with their respective examples of constructive feedback. Giving feedback from time to time is a quintessential part of a manager's job role which one must never ignore.
Further, if you have some more ideas or suggestions regarding examples of constructive feedback, then we would love to hear them from you through your comments below.