Giving Employee Feedback Doesn't Work
- Length: 1:44 minutes (1.59 MB)
- Format: MP3 Mono 44kHz 128Kbps (CBR)
April 20, 2012
Interview with Charles S. Jacobs, author of the book Management Rewired: Why Feedback Doesn't Work and Other Surprising Lessons fromthe Latest Brain Science
Charles S. Jacobs:
Charles S. Jacobs
Negative feedback, if it had any affect, had the opposite of what was intended. It tended to drive down performance rather than drive up performance. And yet at the same time we've known it for forty years. However, most people are still offering feedback and administering running performance appraisals in the same old way.
So how could this be? Well Charles says that you have to understand that we all view the world through our own subjective lenses.
When I'm a manager and I'm giving feedback to an employee and I'm giving just pure objective constructive feedback that isn't necessarily the way the employee experiences it. Because of our high need for esteem we will tend, as employees to interpret the feedback (no matter how objective it is) as punitive or as negative. So we're going to resist that feedback and in fact one of the ways we'll resist it is to do exactly the opposite of what the manager wants us to do.
So what does work?
Feedback works if it's self-generated. So what's a manager to do? A manager isn't to give feedback, a manager should instead ask the employee to perform self-feedback, so rather than to tell - ask.