Criticism is not always such a negative thing. There are ways where you can guide your employees by using an honest, direct, yet respectful approach. With the right process and usage, criticism can be an effective tool to inspire your employees.
Source: The Muse
Supervisory roles require constant feedback, and there are some times where you just can’t get the message through. There are people who need to be critiqued in order to tackle and overcome areas of improvement. Here are some ways you can guide these type of workers into being more efficient in improving themselves.
Listening is important
While pointing out mistakes is effective in telling your employees what to work on, listening is just as important. Often times, employees are affected by multiple stimuli which causes them to not be at their best. Talking to them and hearing them out can help you understand what causes these things and allows you to create an environment for them to grow.
Don’t point fingers
Let’s be honest, there are times where you think it might be better to just put the blame on someone. But that’ll just get you nowhere, and it might strike a big blow to your team’s morale. Instead of saying “You always don’t submit your reports on time,” you can say “Your reports need to be turned in in X days, otherwise we won’t be able to move forward.” This removes any negative criticism while still getting the message delivered.
Always add positive reinforcement
It’s not nice to hear criticism right away when feedback is provided. Find it a priority to always thank them for their contributions and praise them for what they have delivered. Always let them know that you value them before you point out any mistakes. Nobody likes a conversation that starts negatively.
Get to the point
Criticism is about being as direct as possible. You won’t get anywhere by flowering up your words and by beating around the bush. Instead of saying “this needs work,” tell them which part needs what. As an example, “your presentation needs a little work” might translate better as “your presentation needs facts presented in a way that’s easier to understand.” This removes the “guessing game” factor from their improvement and sets them to a more forward course.
Always schedule a follow-up
Feedback is not over on the first conversation. You’ll always have to give your employee time to work on their improvement. If you notice a positive change in their actions and results, be sure to give them a pat on the back or a simple “Good work!” If they don’t show any change, then you’ll know that it’s time to take the next step or to look at other ways to handle it.