The Technique to Communicate Constructive Criticism at Work
We are continuously offering and receiving feedback in our personal and professional lives. Some criticism is subtle, often unnoticed, and some is proactive. The ability to receive and give constructive feedback is a necessary skill for developing meaningful social interactions.
It is no longer enough to guide oneself as a leader or partner. It also serves as a guide for others. This means you'll have to have more difficult conversations than ever before. To assist your direct reports in being productive, favorable, and delivering the work required to meet your group goals, you must be a master communicator and provide them with the feedback they need to grow. All of this must be done with good intentions and the goal of establishing trust. Your interpersonal relationships will be critical to your capacity to obtain influence, drive people, and thrive in your role.
Constructive criticism can help us by guiding us, motivating us, reinforcing effective behaviors, and decreasing ineffective behaviors. Let's look at some ways to improve the way we provide and accept constructive feedback.
1. Giving Constructive Feedback Before you give someone feedback, make sure you're doing it for the correct reason: to help them grow and improve. Instead of delivering comments, consider a self-reflection session if you are in a foul mood or trying to make yourself powerful. If you're doing it for the correct reasons, use these techniques to ensure that the person gets the most out of your comments.
- Be specific and attainable
Using precise, thorough examples assists the receiver in developing a firm knowledge of the problem and the behaviors that must be changed or maintained. Furthermore, when you are precise, the dialogue focuses on the specific problem or scenario that has to be addressed.
- Determine the best time
Untimely feedback can be misconstrued. The sooner you provide feedback, the sooner the individual can modify their behavior. However, it can be beneficial to refrain from providing critique on the spot, especially if you are in a group. Wait until you can chat to the person one-on-one, then select a quiet area and make it as comfortable for both of you as possible.
- Concentrate on the behavior
Don't pass judgment on the individual. The main thing is to simply address how you feel or what you like or dislike and to avoid speaking for others or expressing your view on their intentions. For example, you could tell the person that something they did or said made you feel a specific way.
- The feedback should be balanced
Some refer to it as the sandwich strategy. The idea is not to sugarcoat your feedback, but to remind the person that you value them and are taking the time to provide criticism. This is also an excellent moment to highlight what they should continue to do.
- Provide assistance
Criticism cannot be constructive if alternative behaviors are not offered and the individual is not supported in the long run. Feedback is an ongoing process. Make yourself available to assist and notify them when you detect progress.
2. Receiving Constructive Feedback If you are frequently giving feedback but not receiving any, you may have developed a wall around yourself that makes it difficult for others to share constructive criticism with you. So the first step is to seek comments from others.
- Recognize that constructive feedback is beneficial to you
Sure, confronting your weaknesses head-on will be unpleasant, but this person is also providing you with a crucial service by guiding you to a solution. Many times, we already know what the problem is, but hearing it from someone else's mouth is frequently the kick in the pants we need to finally take action. As your career progresses, you will begin to solicit constructive criticism on a frequent basis!
- Listen carefully and ask questions to learn how you might improve
Most crucial, pay close attention to the input you receive. Take notes if necessary. Refrain from making an excuse or asking a question until the person has finished speaking.
When they're finished, try to describe the problem they've discovered out loud and ask clarifying questions. If the problem is real—and, let's be honest, it usually is—try to comprehend its breadth and how you can solve it together.
- After your feedback session, devise a strategy and put it into action
This entails reviewing the information supplied, articulating the problem, and devising a plan to proactively improve or remedy the situation. Before implementing your strategy, discuss it with your manager or whoever provided comments to determine if it can be improved. Get started as soon as your plan is complete!
Source: Nesslabs, Jostle, Energy Resourcing