Improving the performance of our team members is a key responsibility of a leader. Yet, employees report that this is often not done well.
How can you improve your feedback to your team and, thereby, improve their performance?
Research reported in Forbes* on this topic suggests that leaders need to be more future focused and collaborative with their feedback. For example, while a leader and team member often agree on the facts when performance has not met a standard, they disagree on the reasons for poor performance. Here are some specific suggestions for improvement:
1. Provide context for the performance feedback meeting and focus on the future – connect it to a career goal. For example, “I have some feedback for you that I think will be helpful as we prepare you for the Director level.”
2. Make sure that your performance standards are specific.
3. Review past performance, providing warranted praise and, where performance is poor, sticking to the facts. Avoid devolving into explanations of the causes.
4. Assume that the person is committed to improvement: “Since we both know that you are committed to continuous improvement, let’s look at some opportunities for that.”
5. Ask them for their ideas on how they can improve performance. Use the discussion as a mutual brainstorming session. Ask them what you can do to support their improvement.
Your collaborative, future oriented feedback can help you build a high performing team that truly makes a Mission Impact.
*Abbajay, M. “Your Performance Feedback Does Not Work – Here is How to Improve It,” Forbes Online, August, 17 2020.