Is Constant Feedback the Key to Happy Employees?

January 30th, 2014 | Articles, Hiring Resources | No Comments »

performance reviews happy workers

Most employers implement some type of job satisfaction survey and employee performance review at least once a year, but are these opportunities for employees to provide feedback to managers (and vice versa) too few and far between? More so, are they creating offices filled with unhappy employees?

If there is a lack of communication between managers and employees there is the potential for anxiety and low morale to permeate throughout the office. Even the most talented and dedicated workers are not impenetrable to its effects. But constant access to feedback can prevent these feelings from festering into something worse – it can prevent the thought of switching jobs from cropping up in in the minds of employees.

Fostering a culture of communication

The most crucial step that can be taken to prevent an office filled with isolated employees is to open up a constant line of communication. It’s not merely placing a comment box in the kitchen, nor is it necessary to nominate someone as a liaison for employee management relations.

Creating a culture of communication takes time and constant effort, but it can pay off big time in the minds of employees. It requires managers to constantly give and ask for feedback – more than on paper once a year. No employee should ever feel uncertain as to whether or not they are doing a good job at work, nor should they ever feel that going to Human Resources is their resort. How can this be done? Consider enacting the following:

• Weekly meetings to discuss the direction of the department/company.

• Stopping by your employee’s desks at least once a day to see if they need anything.

• Give constant criticism (constructive, of course) to employees.

• Give even more encouragement and praise on a daily basis.

• Ask for feedback on projects, the office, and everything else.

• Spend time on informal team-building activities.

Constructive criticism and praise

Employees want to know three things at work: they want to know what they are doing right, what they are doing wrong, and how they can better themselves. That’s where the “Start/Stop/Continue” method comes into play.

Start/Stop/Continue is effective because it encompasses all the worries of the employee and compresses them into a quick bit of constructive criticism and praise. It consists of managers telling their employees one thing to start doing (adding a new feeling of improvement), one thing to stop doing (adding a sense of constructive criticism), and one thing to continue doing (adding a dash of praise to top off the feedback).

If you feel that things are going sour in your office, consider implementing a culture of communication and/or the Start/Stop/Continue methods to give employees a renewed sense of satisfaction in their jobs.

By Kevin Withers

Image courtesy of AMANITO via Flickr