Keep It Simple Feedback

by Alan Fairweather

When was the last time you gave a member of your team some feedback? Not the kind you give in a formal review, but the kind you give on the spot? That's the kind of feedback that results in real growth in your team members - if you keep it simple.

When was the last time you gave a member of your team some feedback? The feedback I'm talking about here isn't some sort of formalized appraisal that takes place with your team members every month, or every six months or once a year. I'm talking about feedback that happens continually and takes place when you see or hear something you want to give feedback on.

The trick is - keep it simple. If you see or hear something you do like - you tell the team member about it. If you see or hear something you don't like or feel could be done better - you tell the team member about it and you coach them.

When you're speaking with the team member it's important to focus on one thing at a time; keep it simple, don't confuse them with a whole list of behaviors. 

If you were giving some positive feedback you don't want to be saying - "I really like the way you deal with difficult customers and you have a great telephone manner. You always get your reports in on time and it's great that you're achieving your target!" You're only diluting the whole feedback and it loses its impact.

If it's some not so good feedback then you don't want to confuse the team member with a whole catalogue of behaviors that you're unhappy about. "You've been late three times this week, your reports are always late and I don't like the way you speak to customers on the phone."

Sadly, some managers don't give feedback on poor behavior immediately. They allow things to go on and on and then they eventually explode.

It's much better to deal with behavior as and when it happens be it good or not so good - and keep it simple!

Alan Fairweather is the author of "How to get More Sales by Motivating Your Team." Visit his web site at to sign up for his free newsletter.

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