Listening: Extending Feedback Beyond Performance

I think we need to unpack the topic of feedback.

Typically, we think of feedback as something leaders offer their team members to help improve their performance. Effective feedback, however, is a two-way street. Feedback should be both given and received.

We need to remember that feedback isn’t always about an individual or team performance. It can be related to systems, processes, technology, tools, and anything related to our ability to work and deliver on expectations.

With restrictions being lifted and life slowly returning to ‘normal,’ now is the time to seek feedback from your people and act on it. Companies which listen to their employees will be more adaptable and responsive to change and future crises.

Other than for performance reviews, do you have a structured feedback process in place?

How will you find out how your people coped while working from home and what might have made it more successful for them?

In my experience, not enough organisations are listening to their people. Perhaps some trot out a survey now and then but, for various reasons, they don’t act on it. All the insight, wisdom and ideas which come directly from the people with experience is just lost.

Seeking feedback is a simple way to open the lines of communication, gain insight into what’s really going on and identify issues before they become problems. Acting on this information builds trust and confidence and creates a culture of honest feedback.

These are the lessons companies should be learning right now.

While this period of working from home is still front of mind, why not ask for feedback from your team?

  • What worked well? What didn’t?
  • Did they have enough support?
  • Did they have the tools they needed to work from home?
  • Was there enough communication between the individual, the team and the leader?
  • What would they change if it happened again?
  • Is there training which they need?
  • Was the system strong enough to support them away from the workplace?
  • What can you do as a leader or as a company to make any future experience more satisfying?

You may not have time to speak to everyone individually, but you should take the time to seek feedback. Your people are your best source of information so listen to them. They are the key to your company longevity.

What can you do now to introduce a feedback system into your workplace and ensure your people are heard?

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