Tip 22: 3 Simple Steps to Providing Feedback

May 27, 2009 -- Sal Silvester

One of the critical communication breakdowns I see teams make is not providing others with feedback.

For some reason, this is one of the hardest things for people to do in the work place. I am not entirely sure why, except to say that people either don't know how to provide feedback to others, it can be very uncomfortable, or both.

Team members want feedback - both positive and constructive. But it has to be delivered in a timely manner and in a way that is specific enough so that people understand the behaviors that need to be changed.

Here's a simple 3-step formula for providing your team members with feedback.

Situation - Impact - Input.

  1. Situation: Start by describing the situation and the behaviors that took place. Do not voice a conclusion or judge. Simply state the facts, the behavior, and be specific.
  2. Impact: Describe how the behavior affected you or how you perceive it affected others. Just state the facts, don't get emotional.
  3. Input: Ask the person for suggestions on how he/she will change behavior, and then set a time to follow-up.
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