Using Constructive Manager Assessment Comments
Being a good manager isn’t easy. And it takes more than just asking for feedback – you need to know how to take action on what you find out.
The best way to ensure open and honest answers is by making the evaluation process confidential. This is easily accomplished with an employee survey solution that guarantees confidentiality.
1. General Comments
When reviewing managers, having a set of general comments you can use can help save time and make the process of reviewing them less stressful. However, it’s important to remember that generic feedback doesn’t always work and should be combined with specific and constructive criticism.
For example, saying “Jane uses too many sick days” may sound general and doesn’t tell the full story of why she has been absent so frequently. Instead, you might need to explain that her absences have impacted her team’s productivity or that she hasn’t been following company policies.
Additionally, you can use general feedback to highlight the positive impact that an employee has had on your organization’s success. Providing examples and data will strengthen your points and incite an employee to continue working hard for the company. It will also demonstrate to the manager that you value their contributions and want them to stay. Consequently, it will encourage them to remain loyal to the organization and provide a high level of performance in the future.
2. Specific Comments
Managers can sometimes make general comments about an employee that can be applied to all of them, such as “Jane needs to stop taking so many sick days.” However, it is important to use individualized comments whenever possible when conducting appraisals. This will deliver a more focused message that is less discouraging to the individual. Additionally, specific and descriptive feedback is more useful than vague comments like “Jane often takes too many sick days.” This type of comment should include further examples that can help the employee identify areas where they need to improve. It should also highlight their achievements which will further motivate them.
3. Constructive Criticism
When feedback is constructive, it focuses on observable behaviour and offers genuine suggestions for improvement. The goal is to help individuals grow into a fuller version of themselves. However, when this type of criticism is destructive it deflates a person’s self-esteem and makes them feel like their flaws are part of who they are.
The best way to deliver constructive feedback is in as close to real-time as possible. This ensures that the events are still fresh in everyone’s minds and will make it easier for a person to change their behaviour.
Providing actionable advice is also important. Feedback that isn’t specific or doesn’t have a clear next step straddles the line between constructive and destructive criticism. Lastly, it’s crucial to evaluate the emotional state of the person giving the feedback. Those who are angry, insecure, or jealous are more likely to launch destructive comments. This is because they are trying to satisfy their own negative emotions.
4. Positive Comments
When delivering feedback, it’s important to include both positive and constructive comments. This is because studies show that employees want to hear about what they are doing well just as much as they do what they need to improve on.
Oftentimes, it’s difficult to know what to write in the positive section of an appraisal. This is because managers may feel they don’t have enough information or that they don’t have anything significant to say about an employee.
Thankfully, there are ways to overcome this problem. For example, if an employee needs to work on being punctual, the manager can point out that being late is impacting the team’s productivity. Then they can suggest the employee contact their HR representative for advice on improving their time management skills. This will make the employee aware that their attendance is a key factor in their success, and hopefully prompt them to be more punctual in future. This could lead to a positive outcome for both the employee and their team.