Submitted by crowe83 on
I'm looking to start using the feedback model in the next few weeks, but I'm wondering about the recommendation to announce it to the team before I start. I'm worried that if I announce it as a new management technique, the team will think it's a gimmick and take it less seriously than I'd like. I think they'll just be waiting for this fad to pass and for me to move onto the next thing.
But what do I know? I've never done this before. I'm wary of ignoring MT recommendations since they seem so time-tested. Has anyone tried the feedback model without announcing it? Are there any pitfalls I should know about.
You will not regret it
Feedback makes all the difference in the world. Early in my feedback implementation I lost sight of two important points. If you cannot deliver it with a chuckle, with no emotion really, it is not feedback. Secondly, feedback is ONLY designed to change future behavior, not what you observed that led to the feedback.
Announce it still. Be frank. Tell them it's your first time, etc. I'm not a licensed member (yet) but i walked it through my team using my own slides and i did not get any concerns about this being a fad. Well, maybe because i do everything differently in my organisation (MT recommendations - O3s, feedback, timely meetings with agendas, etc.).
The only way to make them take you seriously is to continue giving feedback. They might think it's just a fad, but if you persevere and continue with it for months, then they will see that you are definitely serious about it. I think it is still better you walk them through the model as MT suggests. Ask questions if they understood it. Highlight it's designed for future effective behaviour as what mfculbert said. Emphasize they are not in trouble when you give them feedback but it's a way to align them towards the right direction. I even used the driving analogy. And they understand it.
Pitfall to be wary of is not announcing it then them being surprise about hearing the feedback or you bringing it up on their evaluations. Imagine a "new" metric you are being evaluated for but it was not discussed to you prior. I know that feeling. And it does not feel good. Again, just highlight that this is new behaviour for both of you and the feedback rollout starts off with positive feedback anyway to let them get used to it.
Your directs are right to be sceptical
Yes, some of your directs might think it is a fad and hope it goes away. Why wouldn't they? They've probably had a lifetime of professional experience watching managers follow a new idea only to give up in couple months - or at the very least apply new things inconsistently.
I think you need to follow the guidance and annouce it up front. Explain everything. Tell them you expect to make mistakes until you get it right. Over communicate. Answer lots of questions.
This does two things - it shows your directs that you've put serious thought in to what you are doing, which gives you credibility. Public declarations also make it harder for YOU to back out of it down the track (and that's good) - unless you want to be seen as one of those fad people.
I agree with the others
I agree with the others who've already posted, and I have an additional thought:
Make absolutely sure you really do stick to positive feedback to begin with. When you introduce it to them, make sure any examples you have are mostly positive.
The reason I say that is simple: If you start with positive feedback, they are a *lot* more likely to *want* it to not be a fad. It will be a lot easier that way - they won't act quite as cynical about it as they otherwise might. (They might still have some cynicism anyway - 'waiting for the other shoe to drop' - so again, once you introduce negative feedback, try to remember the 90% positive part!)