If you are like many business professionals, you are interested in hearing honest feedback from your employees. You know that their true thoughts and feelings about their work, fellow workers, and the company as a whole can have a big impact on productivity.
No doubt you would like to improve the type of feedback you receive from your employees. With everything else on your plate, though, you may wonder where to start.
Not to worry—here are 4 easy things you can do to get the ball rolling today.
4 Ways to Improve Employee Feedback
- Establish an open door policy. It is crucial to convey to your employees that they are always welcome to provide feedback. Let them know that even if you seem busy, they should feel free to inquire at any time whether they could have a few minutes to speak with you. Make it clear that this is especially true if they have feedback of an urgent nature or that you may not want to hear, as the feedback that is hardest to deliver is often the most needed.
- Listen with your heart. Try to look beyond the actual words. Discern the feelings behind what an employee is telling you. Use open-ended questions, such as: "What happened next? How did that make you feel at the time? How do you feel about it now, after the fact?" When you listen with empathy, your employees will feel safe and will be more likely to provide additional honest feedback in the future.
- Follow up on feedback received. While it is crucial to genuinely listen, it is just as important to take action on anything that needs to be addressed. Let your employees know that their concerns matter to you. Assure them that you will look into any issues they report and will take appropriate action. Then keep your word and follow through. Doing so speaks volumes, sending the message that you truly want to receive their feedback.
- Take the initiative to solicit feedback. Do not wait for problems to find you. Actively seek feedback by asking for it. If you have already taken the steps listed above, your employees will likely know that you are sincere when you ask for further feedback. You might even consider scheduling a time each week or month to meet with them, letting them know that this time is dedicated to hearing from them.
These are just a few of the many things you can do to improve employee feedback. There are many other steps you can take, as well. The important thing is to start right away and adapt as you go along. Rest assured that if you do, your employees will thank you—often times, quite literally.