5 Things About Feedback You Need To Know

According to PwC, nearly 60% of survey respondents reported that they would like feedback on a daily or weekly basis, if you have employees under 30 that goes up to  72%.

More than 75% of respondents believe that feedback is valuable. About 45% of respondents also value feedback from their peers and clients or customers, yet less than 30% said they receive it. (Ohos makes it easier to collect, BTW.)

There are a lot of reasons employees might not be receiving the feedback they desperately need. Maybe we’re worried about damaging self-esteem, maybe we don't like confrontation, maybe we just rely on we’re too busy, or perhaps we haven't found a tool that makes it easier...yet.

While these excuses may be true, they are no less acceptable. Feedback is useful, feedback is actively and loudly desired and feedback has incredible impact on the workplace. The best companies have a feedback loop installed so if you want to be on that list, you better get with the program.

Here are few more things to convince you...

1. Managers who received feedback on their strengths showed 8.9% greater profitability.

According to Gallup, people who know and use their strengths and areas of development tend to be better performers. In one study of 65,672 employees, Gallup found those who received strengths feedback had turnover rates that were 14.9% lower than for employees who received no feedback (controlling for job type and tenure).

When managers received feedback, teams showed showed 12.5% greater productivity post-intervention than teams with managers who received no feedback.

In another study of 469 business units ranging from retail stores to large manufacturing facilities, Gallup found that units with managers who received strengths feedback showed 8.9% greater profitability post-intervention relative to units in which the manager received no feedback. Profitability, not just revenue. PROFIT!

2. 69% of employees say they would work harder if they felt their efforts were better recognized.

While mediocre or even poorly performing managers might insist that “a paycheck is their recognition” in reality, it's table stakes. In fact, Zenger and Folkman asserted that not only is positive feedback important, so is negative feedback. You know it’s true. feedback is valuable even when critical, especially when it’s delivered well. 

3. 92% of respondents agreed with the assertion, “Negative (redirecting) feedback, if delivered appropriately, is effective at improving performance.”

From Zenger and Folkman’s survey again, performance feedback is crucial to...wait for it...performance! In fact, only 8 people out of a hundred disagreed (and they probably helped knit the emperor's clothes.)

If you’re a manager or even employee that really dislikes confrontation, well the news just gets worse. Turns out those who can’t dish it out, also can’t take it. It's not the feedback, it’s the confrontation itself that stresses them out.

It makes a great case for companies to use a tool like Ohos to start a culture of feedback. Train your employees (and yourself!) on how to give and receive feedback. Your entire bottom line will thank you. And as you deliver feedback keep in mind there are essentially three types:

  • Positive reinforcement where you recognize the good things someone did.
  • Constructive feedback where you suggest ways to improve.
  • Negative feedback about things that need to stop.

4. 80% of Gen Y prefer on-the-spot feedback, not formal reviews.

Real time feedback is imperative for their growth and understanding of a job. Maybe everyone else wants the same kind of feedback but have long accepted it won't happen so they stopped asking.

So if annual reviews are a process everyone hates, then why are we doing them? Why can’t we do feedback in short, helpful bursts that allow everyone to improve (see stat above) by building up their confrontation skills and reducing the stress around annual (and some say ineffective) formal reviews.

5. 77% of HR execs believe performance reviews aren’t an accurate representation of employee performance.

Yes, the annual review is deemed by over three quarters of the people who created it to be pretty much useless. Consider SAP, who bought SuccessFactors (a large annual performance review platform) for a whopping $3.4B in 2011, ditched the practice in 2016. So the company who sells you performance reviews, says they are useless.

Feedback and performance reviews are not synonymous! Feedback is continuous information between employees, each other and their managers. In fact, when done right, a culture of feedback can go up, down, sideways and interdepartmental, creating opportunities throughout the organization. Unless you think putting your head in the sand is a good way to run a company, there is absolutely no reason not to employ feedback in your company.

How to implement feedback in your company

1. Practice confrontation opportunities when possible.

Start with regular (weekly) positive feedback. After you have regular feedback started in your organization, begin constructive feedback. This is feedback that makes good work better. If you are a good manager, you are likely already doing this. If you struggle, start with questions rather than advice. 

Ask the employee what went well. Add a few other things you noticed. Then ask them, if resources, time, or information were different, how could the outcome have been better? How can you each make that happen next time.

When it’s time to give negative feedback (unacceptable stuff), you have already built up a culture of feedback. They know to expect feedback on their work, both positive and constructive. Even critical feedback is useful for performance when delivered properly.  If you practice giving feedback regularly in all its forms, you will naturally be able to deliver negative or critical feedback more easily than if you had not built your feedback culture.

2. Find a platform designed for “short-wave communication.”

Technology (like Ohos) can make feedback easier to give (and get) and it also can assist with today’s remote teams who have to learn to communicate at regular intervals, before performance management issues arrive. Someone who is not carrying their weight or creating interpersonal relationship issues can really derail a mostly or entirely remote team if left until too late. Getting microfeedback or quick info with Ohos means that you have a tech enabled feedback loop.

And the nice thing about Ohos is when you need performance data for more formal decisions, it is all tracked, filed and easily accessible by you and the employee (no more surprises!)

3. Accept feedback.

The final step in building a strong feedback culture is to accept feedback yourself. Whether you are the CEO, an HR manager, or a VP who wants more engagemnent in her department...you need to accept and acknowledge feedback.

Feedback culture starts at the top and it can’t always flow one way. Have an open meeting once a quarter and have a new exec each quarter talk about feedback they have received (positive and constructive) Implement a platform like Ohos that allows employees to respond to your feedback with...feedback.

Feedback can lead to a better company, better performance, lower turnover, increased profit, and a better career. Get Ohos Today and get started!

Dave NeedhamComment