The ability to give constructive feedback is an essential manager coaching skill. Feedback involves offering evaluations or opinions of someone’s performance or behavior. This is a skill many do not feel at ease with and must cultivate. (Just think of many managers’ views of writing and giving performance appraisals.) To do it effectively, a manager can first give time to objectively assess a team member’s performance or behavior, think about the person’s personality and the best way to communicate with them (so that they hear you), communicate the impact the performance or behavior has on the organization (why it matters) and always provide suggestions and avenues for the team member to improve. Feedback is not a once-a-year practice. It should be given frequently, whenever it is needed.
Why spend time cultivating the skill of providing effective feedback? Given well, feedback can build a team member’s self confidence, create desired behaviors, undo destructive behaviors and move your team closer to achieving their goals. Without effective feedback, you are sailing a ship without a rudder.