employee feedback

Here’s How Effective Managers Can Encourage and Facilitate Employee Feedback

Leadership should be a two-way street, but managers in U.S. organizations are falling behind. According to a 2019 study, 83 percent of workers would like their managers to ask for employee feedback more often.

You’re in a management role for a reason. But that doesn’t mean that your teams can’t contribute effective ideas. A key part of your role as a manager is to listen to and address employee concerns.

Here, we outline how you can improve your leadership by listening to your employees.

Make performance reviews a two-way street

Most businesses will carry out monthly, quarterly or annual performance reviews. But many won’t be using them to their full potential. In recent years, performance reviews have been criticized for focusing on looking backward instead of forward. What’s more, 30 percent of employees find them unhelpful.

While it’s important to review your employees’ performance and identify areas in which they’re doing well, as well as what they could improve on, use evaluations as collaborative sessions. In addition to identifying actions for your team members going forward, allow them to provide feedback. Are they receiving adequate support? Do they have ideas that could improve your team or business performance? Do they have any concerns they need you to address?

Not only will this allow you to become better at listening to your employees, but it also creates an open and inclusive environment. This is essential to making them feel comfortable sharing their concerns, opinions and ideas in the first place.



 Create forums for employees

First and foremost, your employees should feel comfortable contributing ideas and feedback about areas they’d like to see improved. Creating an environment of trust is essential, which can in part be achieved by the above point. But so is giving your employees additional appropriate platforms to submit feedback.

Having an online forum or tool specifically for employee feedback can help you facilitate this. If you adopted a tool like Microsoft Teams during the pandemic, you could create a chat or a team there to allow employees to submit ideas and concerns.

Allowing employees to submit feedback privately or anonymously is also an important option. They might have a concern that is important to them, but it’s not something they want to speak about publicly. This is especially true if their feedback is constructive criticism. You could use an online survey tool that allows them to share their thoughts directly rather than in a shared forum. You could also utilize the same tool to allow them to do it anonymously.

Ultimately, you need honest feedback from your employees and giving them an anonymous option will make them feel more comfortable about speaking out.

Group and prioritize the feedback

Eliciting honest feedback from your employees is important. But there’s little point in this if you don’t do anything with it. Categorizing the ideas and concerns your employees are submitting will allow you to deal with them more effectively.


StartupNation exclusive discounts and savings on Dell products and accessories: Learn more here

When collecting feedback, encourage open discussion so employees can talk about anything on their minds, or ask for ideas or thoughts on specific areas you want to improve on. Splitting this first by new ideas, like a change in your strategy, and concerns, such as slow processes, is a good place to start.

Once you’ve done this, you can start to address your two strands and work out key priorities. If one theme — such as high workloads — surfaces over and over again, this should be a top priority. Having an effective change management process in place is important, too, especially if your employees are contributing to your overall business goals.

Be transparent with the changes you make

However you choose to collect employee feedback, make sure you’re providing regular updates on how you’re responding to it. Communication is key to your team members trusting you — 41 percent of U.S. employees think their managers should improve their communication skills.

If your company hosts regular meetings, this is a great opportunity to share your updates. Collate the feedback you’ve addressed into groups of similar ideas or concerns, and share the changes you’ve made, or plan to make, in response.

Don’t feel like you need to be limited to formal meetings, either — if you have an intranet or a dedicated feedback tool, utilize this to share frequent updates on the progress you’re making. Proactively providing updates throughout the year will show your staff that you’re listening to them and taking action on their feedback.

There are many skills required to be a good leader. As well as being confident in your own decision-making, you should also be open to listening to your employees. Whether they have ideas on how your business can improve its operations or they need to share concerns, creating an environment that makes them feel heard and understood is important.


Sign Up: Receive the StartupNation newsletter!

Total
5
Shares
Previous Article
CRM and marketing automation

How to Use CRM and Marketing Automation to Improve Your Scalability

Next Article
wjr business beat

WJR Business Beat: Small Business Labor Costs Continue To Rise (Episode 311)

Related Posts
employee feedback
Read More

A Startup Guide to Creating an Employee Feedback Strategy

Startups can be high-pressured environments, with world-changing missions that inevitably encourage staff to work incredibly hard. It’s probably no surprise that the average tenure at a fast-growing startup is just two years, several years less than the market average. High levels of staff turnover can be disruptive and very expensive. It’s also particularly challenging to...
entities for incorporation
Read More

Ready to Exit Sole Proprietor Status? Consider These 4 Entities for Incorporation

A new year means a clean slate for business. If your business is still in sole proprietor status, now is the perfect time to start thinking about incorporating as a registered entity formation. What registered entities should entrepreneurs incorporate as? Here are a few popular options for entrepreneurs planning to exit sole proprietor status. Limited...
communication skills
Read More

7 Tips to Improve Your Business Communication Skills

Communication skills are a crucial part of any business. To increase your success, you need to learn how to communicate with the people around you. Communication skills make it easier for you and your team members to work together more effectively on projects, solve problems more quickly and reach goals faster. The following seven tips...
save startup money
Read More

Do These 8 Things to Save Your Startup Money in 2022

Startup entrepreneurs face some of the toughest odds when it comes to achieving success. With 90% of startups failing — more than half by Year 3 — there’s seemingly little hope for those looking to start their own company. Yet, small business owners are vital to the U.S. economy. These mom-and-pop shops make up for...