Part 1 of our guidance describing the most effective method of letting your directs know how they are performing: Feedback. Feedback shows someone the impact of their behavior, allowing them to change ineffective actions or continue doing things that help the team achieve its goals.

Feedback is the most frequently-used tool of effective managers. What is feedback? Feedback shows someone the impact of their behavior, allowing them to change ineffective actions or continue doing things that help the team achieve its goals. The dirty little secret of most managers is that while they are DESPERATE to get feedback from their bosses, they then visit that same sin on their own team. Every time we ask groups of executives and managers if they'd like more guidance and response from their boss, everyone raises their hand.

On the other hand, every group also believes that their team is hearing everything the team needs from them. Of course, it's not true.

Another example of how little feedback is intentionally given is how managers defend themselves when we challenge them. "You don't give enough feedback," we suggest, and the common response is "I give detailed annual reviews," or, better but still trivial, "I do quarterly reviews". This is a great amount of feedback/guidance if you're willing to wait 90 days or a whole year to change/improve anybody's performance.

We have learned that, from working with hundreds of thousands of managers world-wide, the reason this is so is a combination of fear of conflict, and lack of skill. Basically, you probably see things all the time that you don't like or would like to improve in some way. We think a lot of your fear is retention related: "Well, what I have to share is not that big, and if I say something, he might get mad and quit, and gee, he may not be great but he does more work than an open position would..." The other reason is most managers don't know how - this guidance will teach you a foolproof, simple and fast way to talk about performance.

This Cast Answers These Questions

  • How can I deliver performance communications to my team?
  • What should I say when giving feedback?
  • Is there a proven way to give negative feedback politely and professionally?

Mentioned in This Cast

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