How to create a feedback culture– six steps to follow

two employers having a discussion

Feedback in the workplace is a critical tool for growth, but for many, an annual performance review might be the only feedback they receive.

In fact, a recent study found that 96% of employees surveyed wanted more regular feedback from their employers. The same study also revealed that 83% of employees preferred praise over gifts – shedding light on just how valued constructive feedback is. If you would like to make changes to your current process here is our guide to getting started:

1. Communicate your feedback process

Having a clear feedback process in place is essential to its success. Make sure you know what mechanisms you’ll use for feedback and communicate it clearly to all employees. It’s important that anyone in your organisation who is managing people understands their responsibilities and is familiar with the new formal and informal feedback processes you’re implementing.

2. Feedback regularly

Regular feedback demonstrates to your employees that they’re valued, and that you’re invested in their future. It also helps to identify any potential problems. Remember that feedback is just as important when things are running smoothly; there’s always room to improve processes and procedures within the business.  Some of the most successful companies in the world use regular feedback to make their best even better.

3. Praise often

Recognising the work your employees do, on a regular basis, is a great way to motivate, inspire and build morale. All too often, employees only receive feedback when they’ve done something wrong, so having formal recognition in the workplace is vital. Whether it’s during staff meetings, by email, or as an informal comment make sure your employees know how much their hard work is appreciated.

4. Feedback one on one

Any feedback outside of recognition should be on a one-to-one basis. If your regular feedback process is built in to your regular one on one sessions between managers and employees, make sure it’s being done with respect and privacy. Working with managers on constructive ways to provide and receive feedback will help them get the best out of their team.

5. Keep it constructive

Not all feedback is positive, but it can be constructive. Use the feedback sandwich; start with something positive, follow with the feedback and wrap up with something positive. For example, you could start by highlighting something the employee is doing well, then discuss the areas where improvement is needed. Be ready with practical suggestions that will help improve performance and don’t forget to follow up and see how things are going.

6. Ask for feedback from employees

Employee feedback about the workplace, the culture and opportunities will provide you with rich insights into how well you’re looking after your most important asset. Some employees will happily provide verbal feedback whilst others will prefer a survey that allows them to remain anonymous. Offering a variety of ways to feedback, following up on results and being seen to actively implement change will encourage staff, raise morale, and improve productivity.

We all need feedback to grow, change and be the very best we can. In the workplace, employees need acknowledgment that the work they do is valuable and that they’re appreciated by their employer. By having some practical processes in place to give and gather feedback, you’ll be working towards a healthier workplace culture where people feel comfortable, inspired, and supported.

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