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Delaying Feedback Doesn't Help Anyone...

Are you so skittish about damaging a relationship or de-motivating a team member that you don’t give developmental feedback? You are not alone. It is unpleasant. Not fun. Can be seen as hurtful.

Yet, it is probably more hurtful to NOT give the feedback than to wish it away. Because, really, that’s what we are doing, isn’t it?

Who can blame you, really? Everyone wants to be liked, and we all know you get more flies with honey than with vinegar.

However, you aren’t doing anyone any favors if you don’t give feedback. The employee suffers, and in the end so does the whole organization.

By not giving performance feedback, you are indirectly telling the employee that the way they are behaving or working is correct. Your inaction is actually an action. If they are not “improving,” the responsibility might actually rest on your shoulders, not theirs.

And the problem just grows and grows. Each manager solves the problem by passing the employee onto someone else. This can go on for years. When the time comes to cut the person loose, you have the perfect recipe for a lawsuit because the employee had no reason to believe he or she wasn't the perfect employee all along.

Is this you? Do you “wish it away?” Do you indirectly mention the issue in vague terms in a staff meeting? Stop that! Give the feedback, caringly, professionally, and with the respect your employee deserves...

It is like taking off a bandage. Do it succinctly, clearly, and as quickly as possible after the misstep.

Describe the unwanted behavior in clear terms with valid examples, then describe the desired behavior. And don’t forget to describe why it is important. Sell the person on the reason for the behavior shift; then they’ll own it.

And you’ll both be better for it. So will your organization or business…