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I recently completed my second round of skip levels which I have scheduled for every other month. I noticed some behaviors of a few of my skips (see list below) and would like to give some adjusting feedback. However, I am concerned that they will interpret it to mean that they shouldn't participate honestly. Thoughts? Advice? Do I give the feedback? Do I share it with their manager?

Thanks!

Examples of behavior:
-- Sitting with arms crossed, eyes forward (not making any eye contact with me) notebook closed in front of them throughout the entire meeting.
-- Making negative comments about their manager such as "I've tried to talk to her/him. It's no use." (I reminded them about my open door policy after these comments.)
-- Making negative comments about work load, tasks and other staff. For example, when discussion delegation/prioritization comments were made like "We can't prioritize. They [other staff] think everything is critical."

Mark's picture

Dani-

Good question.

No feedback. They may have had a bad day, they may still yet be scared to death of you, they may be judging you by your predecessor's treatment of them (highly likely). Regardless, the value of skip levels is not in any one person's behaviors.

Let the skip levels sink in before reaching out to them. My guess is that it will be the same ones over and over, and then you'll have lots to go on (while still focusing on the recent stuff).

I MIGHT tell their manager, as long as they knew not to say anything. We're just gathering data, and we don't want to make skip levels a theater of THEM. It will destroy the reason you're really there.

Mark

Dani Martin's picture

Thank you, Mark. That helps a lot. I like that answer a lot! :)

mikehansen's picture

Is it a good idea to give affirming feedback to a skip, or are you better off just giving praise?