Generally, feedback can be given either “in the moment” or daily. According to Douglas Stone and Sheila Heen from Harvard University, there are three different types of feedback based on purpose: Evaluation, Appreciation and Coaching. Evaluation feedback needs to be done “in the moment” to help the person receiving the feedback know where they stand. Appreciation and coaching should be given on a daily basis to help inspire and motivate the person to continue doing their best and improving themselves and their performance.
What is Evaluation Feedback?
The primary purpose of an evaluation feedback discussion is to let the person receiving it know where they stand when it comes to their current performance. When an employee knows where they stand, they have clear expectations, and they feel reassured and safe. As a result, they are more likely to receive the feedback positively and work with their leader towards improved performance and better results.
Ideally, an evaluation feedback involves a rating or a ranking. There is often a comparison between other employees and judgement. Other times, there is a set of standards where the employee’s performance is compared with and assessed. These standards can be used by the employee to monitor their improvement and performance against expectations.
Evaluation can be given at a scheduled meeting or on a daily basis. To ensure a successful evaluation feedback discussion, here are some tips:
- Set clear expectations with regards to the roles and responsibilities of the employee(s) receiving feedback.
- Be clear with your purpose in giving feedback.
- Be accountable for the process and the results.
- Record and monitor employees’ progress and outcomes.
- Use real-time approach and try to give follow up evaluation within 24 hours.
- Separate evaluation from coaching and appreciation.
What is Appreciation Feedback?
An Appreciation feedback conversation is what you give when you want to show appreciation or thank the employee for their contribution and performance. It is important to notice and acknowledge their effort to further build trust in your relationship. Encourage the employee to celebrate their success and good performance to motivate them to continue with their progress and growth.
A great appreciation feedback is one that is specific, linked to the receiver’s values and authentic. It needs to be specific, so that the employee knows what exactly he or she did that caused the appreciation feedback. This helps the employee identify what else he or she needs to do to continue to improve on what he or she needs to keep doing.
Linking the appreciation feedback to the receiver’s values makes it more effective and personal. It helps the receiver easily accept and understand the feedback and learn more about his or her role and responsibilities in the company.
Lastly, an appreciation feedback needs to be authentic each time you are giving it. It needs to be unique to the employee and to the situation. This prevents the appreciation feedback to feeling like it is just a routine thankyou, which will eventually cause the employee to lose interest in striving for growth and improvement. Tokenistic appreciation is not effective.
What is Coaching Feedback?
After informing the employee where they stand in terms of their performance evaluation or giving them appreciation for the effort they are putting in for their growth and improvement, you may need to move on to giving them coaching feedback.
A coaching feedback discussion is different from evaluation and appreciation, although it can have both elements. A coaching feedback often involves regular and periodic reviews. Its primary purpose is to further inspire the employee and lead them towards continued growth and improvement.
Some of the benefits of coaching feedback include:
- Increasing employee effectiveness
- Preventing them from using behaviours that may hinder their growth
- Encouraging them to maintain effective behaviours
- Promoting commitment within employees and their work and the organisation
Giving and receiving feedback help to create positive learning and growth between all employees and executive leaders. The Centre for Creative Leadership says this is one of the best ways to establish and help strengthen trust between leaders and staff. Regardless of the time and place when feedback is delivered, it should always be aimed to help improve performance, development, and lead to positive outcomes for both the employee and the organisation.
If you fell that your workplace could do with improved skills around feedback, then I run a great workshop called “Giving and Receiving Feedback”