I just realized that in two days it's a year since I went to the forums to look for advice on how to start giving proper feedback in my workplace - (I got some good points) and I still haven't got there!

Maybe I am letting the perfect be enemy of the good? But to be honest, I still have no idea about how to effectively roll out the feedback model with my team of managers that is spread across the country.

The two main things that I have difficulties getting my head around is 1) how to provide feedback - should I call them instantly to give feedback on a report? Is email better? Or save it up for the weekly one on one?

I visit each direct and his/her team on average once a month. 2) It feels very intrusive to just walk around observing how they interact with their team. Any pointers on how to assess how a manager interacts with his team/performs trainings/one on ones etc?

thank you!


tlhausmann's picture
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Can you step up your communications to weekly one-on-ones with your direct reports?

Weekly O3 meetings provide the extra level of communication and familiarity necessary to make feedback more natural.

RasmusTQ's picture

Sorry if that was unclear in the above post. I already do. We've been doing weekly O3's for the last one and a half year or so.

jhack's picture

If it's not critical, you can give feedback during the weekly one-on-ones.  Do you  talk to them other than in these formal meetings (work product reviews, account reviews, that sort of thing?)  Those are also good opportunities.  

John Hack

430jan's picture

Feedback can be thought out to death. I do that all the time. How to give it? The M's say never in an e-mail if my recollection is right. But they also do it by phone. Let your employees know about how you are going to deliver it. Don't make it a big secret. Have the structure down pat: "May I",  "When you" "Here's what"....Make it extremely short at first. Struggle to get it down to a dozen words so it doesn't feel like a big deal to you or to them. Follow the structure every time so that they know when you ask "May I" it is more likely to mean that they are receiving positive feedback and not about to get slammed. I would avoid making the O3s all about feedback, but it can certainly be a part.

As to evaluating your managers. Ask to see their notes on one-on-ones. Monitor their staff retention, productivity and sick leave. Those are concrete measures of how your skips are doing with their managers. How your managers interact may be entirely different than you ... and I think that's ok. I don't think that it is ok to look over their shoulder all the time, and I believe it encourages troublemaking skips to come to you with complaints. But others may feel differently. Objective measures of success are what you want anyway. If they are dictators you'll know.

I read somewhere that it takes 10,000 hours of performing a task to reach proficiency. I'm preaching to myself when I say that if you never get going on feedback you will never improve. If you have been doing O3s with your staff for a year then they will forgive the initial awkwardness.

Your post indicates that you are motivated to do better. That's the most important part!