How to Give Tough Feedback That Helps People Grow

Fierce Resources: HBR Blog 2013 Ideas

This week’s Fierce resource was originally published on Harvard Business Review and outlines the difference between critical and constructive feedback.

For most of us, just thinking about feedback elicits a sense of discomfort, anger, and even contempt. We can be so afraid of it that we either avoid it all together or hide behind anonymous feedback. But as a leader, providing honest, clear feedback is one of the best gifts you can give your team.

Approach a feedback conversation as an opportunity to deepen an employee’s self-awareness and propel growth. How to Give Tough Feedback That Helps People Grow recommends creating certain conditions in which the receiver can take in feedback and learn from it.

What conversations are you not having?

“Managers fall into a number of common traps. We might be angry at an employee and use the feedback conversation to blow off steam rather than to coach. Or we may delay giving needed feedback because we anticipate that the employee will become argumentative and refuse to accept responsibility. We might try surrounding negative feedback with positive feedback, like a bitter-tasting pill in a spoonful of honey.”

Read the article.

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