If you want your employees to be engaged and successful, you have to give them an incentive. Now, I know your thought process probably went directly to increasing the pay, but I’m telling you that isn’t all!
So, if pay isn’t the master key… What else could be so important to employees? Long story short, it’s professional development.
In the 2018 LinkedIn Workplace Learning Report, LinkedIn found that 94% of employees said they would stay longer at a company if it invested in their learning and development.
One of the largest drivers for creating a healthy organizational culture is providing employees with an opportunity to develop their skills.
One way that has proven to be effective in accomplishing this is to provide employees with constructive criticism, helping bolster their abilities.
Constructive Feedback: What is it?
In layman’s terms, constructive feedback is when you provide specific suggestions that are actionable and can be used to make positive improvements, according to Indeed.
Constructive feedback, unlike positive and negative feedback, is meant to help a person learn. This is perfect for organizations wishing to help their employees develop.
Giving Constructive Feedback
I’m sorry to break it to you, but there isn’t a science to giving constructive feedback… However, there are some things you should keep in mind so that your employees can get the most out of the feedback:
- Having a Desire to Grow: You could give someone life changing advice, but if they aren’t in the mood to actively listen and learn, nothing will change. Employees look to their managers for feedback on performance and decisions in the workplace. It’s crucial for managers to keep an open mindset while delivering criticism; this will prevent employees from misunderstanding intentions.
- Communicating Through Body Language: Non-verbal communication is just as important, if not more important than, verbal communication. Non-verbal communication often expresses the true feelings of people; way more than we might realize. In fact, Albert Mehrabian, a body language researcher, created the 55/38/7 rule. The rule states that 55% of our communication is non-verbal, 38% is vocal, and 7% are words only. Keep this rule in mind when communicating with employees. You may be verbally expressing your constructive criticism, but body language is going to have a major impact on how they receive the message.
- Articulating: Body language is important, but without verbally expressing your criticism, it can be difficult for someone to determine exactly what needs changing. Speaking with employees can even bring light to issues you weren’t previously aware existed. Practice using clear and encouraging language when communicating criticism to employees. This form of dialogue leaves the conversation open for positive developmental dialogue. After you have gathered all possible information from the conversation, give your employee clear and actionable steps to help them overcome or better their performance. Empty criticism is worse than not saying anything at all.
- Timing of Criticism: The timing of delivering feedback can make or break whether the employee takes it to heart. Emotions have a way of taking us for a ride we’re usually not prepared for. When we are in a rage, we have a tendency to ignore information around us and singularly focus on a goal. It’s something we have all experienced and we should keep it in mind when dealing with others. Next time you want to give someone criticism, allow them time to cool off and gain a level head. Not only will they be receptive to advice, but after evaluating the experience, they may recognize where they went wrong and take corrective measures.
- Continuous Feedback: By continuously providing your employees feedback, you are reinforcing the desired changes required of an employee. This creates a mental note for them to look back on when performing work-related tasks. Employees who are given continuous feedback have the added benefit of knowing where they stand in terms of performance, allowing them to go into review time prepared and focused on their progress.
Using Constructive Feedback to Drive Employee Engagement
Constructive feedback pushes employees to strive for betterment. They gain a clear perspective of the company mission, and as a result it becomes easier to work toward goals.
Constructive feedback, if applied correctly, can change employee mindsets. For example, employees who feel like work is an opportunity to learn are happier in the workplace, resulting in a more engaged workplace.
Help your employees become the very best version of themselves through the power of constructive feedback and see your organization become a place where people trust and respect one another.
Chat with a CoreCounts Consultant to learn about our team training options that will help you create a team of motivated and engaged individuals!