The art of delivering good feedback - S8 Expert Recruitment Solutions

The art of delivering good feedback


The art of delivering good feedback

Throughout our respective careers I’m sure we’ve all been the recipient of some pretty darn average feedback. You know the time you felt like you were under attack? Or, perhaps you’re more familiar with receiving a somewhat vague statement which leaves you with no way of knowing exactly what the problem is, let alone a likely solution. To avoid being the type of person who gives terrible feedback, checkout my tips below:

1. Be specific –while you may think you’re being really helpful by telling your mentee that they don’t think strategically, what does this actually mean? Try to find a situation where they had the opportunity to demonstrate the behaviour you’re looking for and explain to them how they could have done it. Without clear examples and instructions all they’ll come away with is confusion.

2. Explain the impact – you may take issue with your employee’s punctuality. They may feel that they’re getting the job done and the hours in which they complete them are irrelevant. In order for them to understand the issue with their behaviour, you need to clarify its impact. If, for example, you need them to be available at their desk at a certain time because they are client facing or because it’s a pre-determined office rule, explain this to them.

3. Consider the time and the timing – schedule in an appointment for the two of you to have a private conversation as opposed to blurting out your frustrations in a room full of people. There’s no better way to transform constructive feedback into unproductive criticism than by not addressing it in the most respectful way. Similarly, allow time after you’ve said what you needed to for the recipient to respond or ask any questions. It will ensure an open conversation, rather than a one-sided barrage.

4. Don’t make it personal – be clear that the issue you have is with the behaviour of the person, not with the individual. In order for this to be done successfully, carefully consider the language you use. For example you could explain that the person’s presentation could be improved with more examples rather than saying they were boring.

5. Focus on one or two key points – let’s be honest, this person may have a lot of room for improvement. However, you won’t see any of that if you sit them down and run through a list you’ve compiled of their top 20 points to work on. Pick the two most important items and make them your focus. More often than not, by changing those behaviours, there’ll be a flow on effect to other areas too.

6. Follow up – there are times when we’ve all been asked to complete a task and it’s slipped our mind or it just doesn’t seem like a huge priority. For your employee to understand the importance of this action, be sure to check back in with them to see how they’re going. Ideally you’d follow up your initial conversation with an email, capturing the message of your conversation and also scheduling in time to reconvene in a week or two to monitor progress.

If you can be conscious of these tips next time you need to deliver feedback, I feel confident it will be a positive and constructive conversation. So, give it a go! I’d love to hear how these work for you or, if there’s something you’ve tried that you think works particularly well.

Shannon Wood, Managing Director S8 Expert Recruitment Solutions. I have over 14 years recruitment experience specialising in the animal health industry across the ANZ region. Areas of expertise include sales and marketing, technical roles (Quality Assurance, Quality Control & Regulatory Affairs) and operational & financial positions. I work extensively in the veterinary, ruminant, monogastric, aquaculture and the pet specialty industries and I look forward to the next 14 years.


Get the latest animal health industry news and jobs delivered straight to your inbox



    Contact us, we’re ready