Feedback can be detrimental

performance evaluation

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Subject: Feedback

Target groups for feedback

Feedback can be used both for individuals and for groups, for example entire departments or teams. Depending on whether a single person or a group receives feedback, the objective changes and thus also the selected methodology.

In order for optimal feedback to take place in every constellation, the specific situation must be taken into account. In the case of a manager, the feedback can, for example, highlight individual areas of responsibility (e.g. employee satisfaction), or, if necessary, comprehensive 360-degree feedback is provided. In the case of individual employees and teams, supervisors will usually provide feedback geared towards development; colleagues of equal rank can best assess the level of communication in their feedback.

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Feedback as a performance assessment
Promote managers

Managers take on different roles. On the one hand, they are role models and supporters for their employees, but on the other hand they are also instructors and critics. It is important for the company that the interaction between management and employees runs smoothly. For this reason, the employees are also asked when the manager receives feedback.

The employees' assessment is usually carried out by completing questionnaires. The result shows how the manager is seen by the employees in terms of technical competence and cooperation. The HR manager can also question the employees of different managers in parallel and thus receive a direct comparison.

In order to install regular feedback as a performance appraisal, it is essential to get the approval of the executives. Strict confidentiality of the data collected protects those involved from adverse effects. All aspects of the assessment should also be presented openly and understandable. Ultimately, the benefits of feedback must be made clear:

  • The manager gets the opportunity to reflect on his own leadership behavior and to develop further.
  • Management and employees can jointly take measures to improve cooperation and structures in the company.
  • The manager receives information on how successful their own leadership style is assessed.
  • The manager can see and reflect on himself in comparison to other managerial employees.

Feedback as a performance assessment: motivating employees

Employees get their feedback from their line manager or from the HR manager. This feedback comes from top to bottom. In certain situations, however, colleagues of equal status can also give each other valuable tips in feedback. However, this feedback would also have to be initiated by the manager at the same level.


The regular feedback

As a rule, feedback is given annually by the superior in an employee appraisal. The feedback is used to assess performance and determine what went well, what was not achieved and what the next development steps are. The supervisor uses the results of the feedback to decide whether the employee is suitable, for example, as a management trainee.


Review goals

The feedback is also suitable for reviewing set goals. If an employee has taken on new areas of responsibility, prompt feedback with the supervisor or colleague shows whether the induction went smoothly or whether further support is required.

For the employee, the feedback has the great advantage that he always knows how the supervisor assesses his work. In the feedback, he receives valuable information for his own career planning. If he repeatedly receives outstanding performance in the feedback, he can be pretty sure that his concerns will be looked at benevolently. This can include, for example, a request for a raise. For the supervisor, the feedback is a means of assessing his employees as objectively as possible. He can determine the potential of each individual and recognize the individual need for further training.


Feedback as a performance assessment: Strengthening teams

It is now common practice to establish feedback discussions in departments or teams. Here it serves to improve cooperation.


Participants in the feedback

There are many possibilities of who gives whom in the team feedback. Depending on the objective, you can choose one of the options:

  • Each team member gives each team member feedback
  • The team leader gives the team members feedback
  • The team receives external feedback. In this case, the HR manager or supervisor takes on the role of the feedback provider
  • The team leader receives feedback from the team or from outside

Put to the test

The communication between the team members is usually put to the test, because this is where malfunctions occur most frequently. But the basic attitude to teamwork can also be filtered out through feedback. In addition, the excessive or insufficient demands of individual team members can be recognized. The objective of the feedback for teams is that all employees act according to their potential and are satisfied with their role in the structure. Because: If the individual team members feel good, the team works more successfully.