but how to deliver negative feedback that motivates

We all want to motivate, but how to deliver negative feedback that motivates

If someone is unhappy with your performance at work, wouldn’t you want to know?

At the very least, you’d like an opportunity to clear the air, or address the problem, or explain…or something.

Doing it constructively is a challenge for the best of us, and even when we do it well –

who’s to say that your feedback is taken on board and improvements are made?

  • Be clear about what you want at the end before you begin

  • Use language that focuses on the situation, not on the person

  • Turn up to the conversation, stay there and speak out

  • Be open, try to be aim, don’t judge any one and always
    Demonstrate understanding

  • Give examples and share patterns – and the impact on you/others

  • Be clear about what you want at the end before you begin

  • What is obvious to you is not always obvious to others. People cannot look into your head (or heart) and guess how you’d like things.

  • You need to be able to explain, in simple and safe language, what you want from the conversation and why you are starting it.

  • Think about it, picture it. Simply saying that you want something to improve is not enough, it means different things to different people
    Be specific and focus on the future. A useful approach is to know if this is an A, B or C discussion. Are you focusing on a specific Action, an ongoing Behaviour or possible Consequences
    Try not to mix them. Another approach my colleagues use in training is “feed forward
    not back”

    If you are going to give difficult or negative feedback you need to be present in the moment. You are committed to the conversation because you believe both parties will benefit.

Shut out unhelpful self-talk like “well it won’t make any difference” or “ I knew he would say that when I said this”. You both need to focus on this conversation and the outcome. You owe it to both of you to say what you think and feel, taking responsibility for your words and the outcome.

Related: 5 ways to give feedback

Be open, try to be objective, don’t judge

Don’t be vague, don’t be ambiguous. If the situation is a big deal, don’t call it a minor issue. Be open to receiving feedback on your feedback. Listening is as important as talking. Effective feedback is always a two-way street. And remember, what is obvious to others is not always obvious to you.

It’s almost never a good idea to judge others by your standards. You would do this or that, if you were him or her in this situation? You’re not him or her, you’re you. Or, he or she should do this or that in this situation? Better yet, if you were him or her, you wouldn’t even be in this situation… None of that means anything, beyond that you are different people.

Demonstrate understanding

For feedback to lead to a positive outcome for both sides you need to demonstrate understanding. You can do this by … Actively looking to find truth and agreement in what they are saying and validating this. If you disagree with everything they say, how likely is it that they will accept and embrace everything you are saying?

Keep calm,  centred and actively side-step confrontation and escalation. Summarize your understanding of the other persons feelings (and be open to them correcting you).blog of learn laugh speak


Keep up to date with your English blogs and downloadable tips and secrets from native English Teachers

Learn More