Giving and receiving honest feedback is essential to grow and develop, and to build successful caregiving situations. So why is it that many of us put off giving feedback to those working with us? Maybe it’s because there are so many ways to mess it up.
Here are some common feedback mistakes:
- Speaking out only when things are wrong.
- Providing generic praise without specifics or an honest underpinning.
- Waiting until performance or behavior is substantially below expectations before acting on it.
- Giving negative feedback in public.
- Criticizing performance without giving suggestions for improvement.
- Clearly, giving and receiving constructive feedback is a skill that must be honed.
Developing proficiency in this area is essential to building good relationships with, and motivating peak performance. To help get you started, here are four tips for providing feedback the right way:
- Be proactive. Nip issues in the bud and avoid messy interpersonal tangles that result from neglected communication. If you meet with employees regularly to give feedback, it conveys, “Your success is important to me, so I want to be accessible to you.”
- Be specific. Although it’s not easy to provide negative feedback, it’s important to be as clear as possible by giving specific examples that illustrate your point. Instead of saying, “You don’t show up early enough for me” say, “When you don’t arrive with enough time left for me to update you, I worry that we’ve not communicated clearly about what is needed. Can you please arrive five minutes earlier so we can talk without me being so rushed? “
- Layout a clear plan. Be clear about the specific changes you need, and follow up as scheduled.
- Link caregivers’ performance to your needs and goals. Reinforce the value of your caregivers’ contributions by giving specific examples of how their work and positive behaviors serve you and your family best.
At HomeAides, we understand and appreciate the value of constructive feedback. So we’d like to hear from you. Please contact us with your questions, comments, and suggestions.