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Unemployment is at record low levels. Great news for employees, but rough water for employers trying to hang onto a steady workforce. Every month, about 3 million Americans quit their job in search of something better. 31% of employees quit before making it to the half-year mark!

This kind of turnover is extremely expensive. By some estimates, it can cost an employer double an employee’s salary to replace them when they quit. That cost varies across different industries, but for some employers, it can be even higher.

Consider the employees you have working for you who have mission-critical skills that your business relies on, employees who have reinvented their job or who are such a linchpin that the thought of them leaving terrifies you. 25% of all employees are of this nature, what you might consider “high risk” when it comes to retention.

How do you win the employee retention battle? How do you keep from losing your employees in this kind of job market? To keep your employees working for you, consider trying these seven employee retention strategies:

1. Salary And Benefits Must Be Competitive

A recent Glassdoor survey of people in recruitment, HR, and hiring managers found that for 45% of employees who quit, the top reason is salary. This reason was followed by career advancement opportunities, better benefits, and location.

Is it always about the money?

According to a collection of recent surveys on employee retention, only 24% of “Generation X” employees say that financial stability motivates them to stay in a job. Yet 56% of employees say that health care and insurance concerns keeps them in their job. Benefits that are actually beneficial matter. Money matters. What you offer your employees in this area must be comparable to other businesses in your industry in your region.

After seeing those statistics, you’d be forgiven if you thought that the easiest fix for employee retention concerns would seem to be to offer more money and more benefits. No doubt these are two top issues that employers must consider, and for some employees, that would be necessary.

However, seeing this as the only option is a knee-jerk reaction that can cost your business more than it can afford. Salary and benefits are important and should be considered—especially if you are paying below industry standards—but there are other methods to retain employees than costly raises and benefits.

2. Hire The Right Person At The Start

Glassdoor found that 35% of those doing the hiring of new employees are doing so with the expectation that more employees will be quitting in the coming year. It’s a little disheartening to know that those doing the hiring are already envisioning over one-third of their hires walking out the door.

If you hire a quitter, don’t be surprised if they quit. If you hire someone who’s a bad fit for your business, don’t be surprised if they (or employees they’ve annoyed) quit.
37% of hiring managers say that new hires would stick around longer if they were better informed during the hiring process. A poor onboarding experience for a new hire builds a foundation of negativity in the new job.

Make sure you’re being honest about what you expect of the new hire. Don’t hide or sugar-coat aspects of the job just to get a person to bite. Transparency is key in finding the right employees. If you need a little extra help, try using hiring software to make the job easier.

3. Reduce Employee Pain

You can’t expect employees to function like robots. When an employee’s work and life balance is out of whack, there’s pain. If your employee feels like she spends most of her life working instead of living, the job becomes the bad guy.

Consider the aviation industry, and the struggle airlines are having with a pilot shortage. There simply aren’t enough pilots to fill the airplanes, and a looming retirement wave of seasoned pilots promises to make the problem worse.

Airlines have been working at several solutions, with one being fairly obvious: offer better salaries than can be found elsewhere in the industry, and tempt pilots away from other airlines or from corporate aviation. This, in turn leads the Air Force to increase salaries for pilots, a kind of trickle down effect that will ultimately have the worst impact on those companies unable to compete with such salaries.

What should a small business or company do if they are in a situation or an industry in which competition for great employees is high, but the business can’t afford to pay a dollar-for-dollar competitive salary?

Find the pain point.

Through employee surveys, direct feedback, or paying attention to industry trends, find out what is a point of frustration for employees in your industry.

For example, commercial pilots often have onerous schedules, living in one city and having to fly to another city where they are “based.” They spend time surrounded by traveling strangers (some who are not the most cheery) and in hotels instead of with family. That’s a point of pain for some.

Alleviate the pain point.

Think of pain as the main thing to be alleviated.

Money alleviates pain, in a way, making the hassle worthwhile because the resulting paycheck will make other areas of life less painful. But there are other ways to attack the pain problem that some employees will consider being just as valuable as being paid more.

Using our aviation example, corporate aviation can sometimes offer more family-friendly schedules even if they can’t match commercial salaries. They are revamping how they set up flight schedules so that pilots can be home each night, or have shorter on-the-road schedules.

Conversely, airlines are attractive to corporate pilots who are tired of the full service (clean, schedule, greet, stow luggage, plan) they have to handle on each flight; for most airlines, the pilot simply has to show up to fly. Perhaps a corporate flight department might consider hiring staff that would do much of the unskilled labor (cleaning, etc.) and fully combat all perceived pain points to retain and attract pilots.

Don’t let the pain build elsewhere.

Good workers are easily taken for granted. Be on guard for employees who may not be complaining, but are quietly feeling exhausted or frustrated about the amount of work expected from them.

Some employees, because of their personality or nature, won’t even realize they are overworking themselves. Perhaps you don’t expect it of them, but they have a work ethic that demands a constant nose to the grindstone approach. These are employees who sometimes think in terms of an accounting ledger, and will rarely take time off because they don’t want to miss the income. For these people, paid vacation helps. Gifting a random paid day off helps.

Perhaps organizational changes have created pain unintentionally. Perhaps you’ve created a pain point by solving another problem but creating a new one. Whatever the case, communicate with your staff and keep an eye out for areas that have inspired grumbling. Those are pain points.

4. Have Leaders, Not Bosses

Few people want to be leaders, but everyone wants to be the boss. Remember, though, that people follow leaders, while they abandon bosses. A boss is a dime a dozen while leaders are rare.

Do you want to keep your employees?

It’s worth knowing the five characteristics of effective leaders, because it’s going to play directly into employee engagement, our next employee retention strategy.

  1. Clear direction towards the future. Good leaders let employees know where the company is headed. Bosses don’t share information and leave employees wondering if there’s good or bad coming down the pipe and if they should be concerned.
  2. Able to handle challenges. Leaders handle the many challenges that come their way instead of intentionally or unintentionally offloading the stress onto the employees.
  3. Genuine desire to offer high quality. For both customers and employees, good leaders offer the best products, services, and experience possible. Bosses are almost behind the curve, scrambling to meet the minimums.
  4. A belief in the importance of people. Good leaders consider employees their most important asset. Bosses are focused on numbers.
  5. Inspires confidence. Good leaders make employees feel confident about their ability to lead them to a good place. Bosses tend to inspire passive-aggressive frustration as employees question the decisions that have been made that have affected them negatively.
How do you be a good leader instead of just a boss?

Be available for your employees.

Bosses often give lip service to an “open door policy”, but it’s not enough to simply invite criticism and feedback. It’s not unusual for people to feel they can’t really express themselves for fear of embarrassment or reprisal, even with open door policies in place.

This is about actively creating an open rapport with employees. You don’t have to become best friends but taking the time to be friendly and engaged with your employees will pay off in spades.

Be steady and structured.

Provide work schedules regularly and in advance so your employees can plan their personal lives. Have a good handbook and stick to it, treating all employees and situations equally and fairly.
Anything less is chaotic. Employees don’t stick around for chaos and drama.

5. Keep An Eye On Your Managers

People leave managers, not companies.

Ever ask people about the jobs they hate and the reasons they left?

Chances are pretty good that one of the first things you’ll hear is griping about a manager or boss, not the products, the customers, or other co-workers. Keep an eye on your managers.

People follow as they’re led, and a bad manager creates a negative mess all around.
So, while you’re taking the time to train your manager to deal with the technical aspects of their positions, it’s in your best interest to include some “soft skills” as well. This means teaching your managers how to encourage and motivate different types of people, personality traits, conflict management, stress management, crisis management, and so on.

6. Make Employee Engagement Possible

According to a Gallup poll, 56% of somewhat disengaged and 73% of actively disengaged employees are actively looking for a different job.
That ought to get any employer’s attention.

Your first response, however, shouldn’t be a matter of blaming employees for their distraction as a reason for their disengagement. Distraction is associated with motivation problems. As an employer, you need to understand what motivates people to want to become fully engaged with the work they do and what makes them merely punch in at the time clock until something better comes along.
What motivates people to engage, care, and want to stick around and stay a part of the team?

Offer valuable learning opportunities.

Employees who are highly engaged in learning are also more engaged at work.
Just remember that the kind of learning opportunities I’m talking about isn’t the same as on-the-job training. You should be helping your employees to grow and expand, not simply get better at what they already do. If your training centers completely rely on increasing performance in a current role, you’re missing the boat. Consider:

  • Cross-training programs so employees have a broad skill set, not just a narrow set limited to their specific job.
  • Mentorship programs that encourage mentee to become mentor.
  • Create a leadership ladder so employees know what they need to do to move up.

Good employees (the ones who are dedicated to your company—the ones you really want to keep) want the opportunity to advance, not just maintain momentum.

Make advancement possible.

Whether it’s job advancement, promotion, or some form of professional development, people who feel like there is always a goal they can work for instead of a dead end are generally more motivated.

Makes sense, doesn’t it?

How hard will you work if you know you’re only going to be treading water, instead of advancing, for the foreseeable future of your job? Why wouldn’t you start looking for a new job if you’re someone who is motivated by achievement?

Give employees opportunities for concrete success.

According to Entrepreneur, people have a “deep desire to feel they’re succeeding and that their talents and capabilities are being used in a way that makes a difference to the business.”

It’s not enough for you to give vague (if well-intentioned) feedback. Your employees actually want to see the results of their work. They want to have that concrete object that they can rest their pride on. They need to see the results with their own two eyes.

7. Be A Brand They Can Be Proud Of

This is an age of activism, with upcoming generations who want every aspect of their lives to be part of a solution instead of a problem. Be a business known for the positives, known for your involvement and support of:

  • Charities and helpful organizations.
  • The local community.
  • Issues such as environment, education, or equality.
  • Team-building and a family-like work environment.

Find a way that your business can fit such a reputation. You might have to turn your business reputation on its head. For example, maybe you are an auto shop that donates to environmental activities, or is known for your eco-friendly policies regarding your waste. Perhaps you run a restaurant that regularly provides food for a local soup kitchen.

Employees who are passionate and care about the impact their lives have on the world will consider working for a positive branded business a serious benefit.
While every business has to evaluate where their wages and benefits sit in comparison to regional industry standards, those direct dollar concerns aren’t the only way to retain your employees.

Just remember that your employees aren’t automatons, chugging along only for a paycheck. They care about where they work, how they work, and who they work with. When competing in a tight job market, it’s important to keep that in mind instead of getting in an unwinnable wage bidding war that could wipe out your bottom line.

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A work anniversary is a significant milestone and like we’ve written about before, it’s super important to celebrate them the right way. Because when we talk about celebrating work anniversaries, we’re talking about more than just a number!

After all, every new year with a great team member isn’t just another tally in their records—it’s an achievement that should be celebrated with purpose. They’ve built relationships, accomplished goals, and made an impact on your company, all things that should be celebrated.

You can start with creative employee rewards, but there are so many other options out there beyond handing out plaques or paperweights. Ultimately, on a team member’s work anniversary, you should be showcasing the immense impact their work has made on an organization. Recognizing their efforts makes them feel seen and appreciated, increasing their likelihood of being engaged with their future work.

Check out Donut’s partner content on the impact of celebrating work anniversaries.

Remember, you want ideas that really show the recipient that they’re valued at their workplace. let’s make it memorable! 🎉

1. Handwritten notes

In this technology-driven age, it’s rare that people sit down to thoughtfully pen their sentiments. That’s why an old-fashioned, handwritten note can be so meaningful to its recipient. The milestone of a work anniversary is the perfect opportunity to gather the team together to express their gratitude in writing.

In a world where so much communication is merely utilitarian, these simple acts of investment, remembrance, gratitude, and appreciation can show the people who matter to your life and business that they are important to you. 
John Coleman, HBR

Plus, there’s just something tangible about appreciation in writing. For remote workers, there can be the additional joy of letters in the mailbox! Plus, the recipient can put these notes up in their workspace as a reminder of their hard work—a great pick-me-up for a rainy day. 📝

2. Public recognition

This one takes personal notes a step further. Don’t underestimate the power of public recognition, and since work anniversaries are such an important epiphany moment, this is a great time to truly broadcast someone’s accomplishments in a year.

Here at Bonusly, we (of course) use Bonusly’s work anniversary bot to automatically give a bonus to our teammates when it’s their special day. Since it’s automated, it’ll show up on the bonus feed and also serves as a reminder so the rest of us pile on to mention achievements, special moments, inside jokes, and more.

Even if you’re not utilizing Bonusly, public recognition can easily be done through email or even as a special shout-out during an all-hands meeting (we know one company that even plasters a wall full of post-it notes for the person being celebrated!). In addition to honoring a well-deserving employee, making recognition a regular practice at your organization can increase employee engagement levels by nearly 60%.

3. Decision-making power

This can go a number of ways! For someone’s work anniversary, you could let them hold the power over the day’s lunch selection; a new piece of art at the office; the design for company swag; an addition to the company’s employee handbook; the possibilities are endless!

Allowing someone a special chance to make their mark on the day—or more permanently on the company—is a meaningful gift that conveys their importance to the organization at large.

4. Time off

Time is a valuable commodity, which makes a day off a great reward for those who have reached their work anniversary. It gives an employee an unexpected break from their day-to-day, which is sometimes all someone needs to come back refreshed and ready to do great work.

If you can’t swing letting them have a full day off, consider late arrivals and early releases, too.

5. Career-planning session

Like we’ve said before, work anniversaries are an important epiphany moment, meaning that it’s an occasion where employees assess their goals and whether they’re happy in their position. That makes a holding an intensive career-planning session a natural fit for this milestone, and shows employees that their company is invested in their future and success.

6. Paid sabbatical

Of the organizations listed, Fortune's 100 Best Companies to Work For in 2012, 25% offer paid sabbaticals.

Coincidence? Nah.

Paid sabbaticals are great for attracting talented employees, but they’re also a great benefit for retaining those employees. Reserve this special perk for employees that have been at your company for five years or longer, since sabbaticals are an opportunity for them to take a step away and come back refreshed.

The way most folks get a nice, long break from work is they leave their job and then scratch their itch and find a new job. [Sabbaticals] give people a break and something new without losing them for good.
–Brendan McGovern, MeetUp CFO and cofounder

Aside from giving an employee a fresh perspective, a decline in stress, and better overall well-being, sabbaticals or extended leaves also impact the company as a whole: researchers found that when well-seasoned team members take time off, the circumstance gives aspiring leaders a chance to grow and results in better collaboration once the sabbatical is over.

7. Charitable donation

Donating to a non-profit organization in an employee’s name communicates that their personal values matter to their company, and it makes a real impact to those in need!

8. Break into the archives

Whether it’s an employee’s first work anniversary or 10th, chances are they—and the company—have changed a lot! Look back at your old chat logs, emails, and files to create a collection of old memories. This can spark some quality team bonding, sentimental conversation, and blackmail opportunities. 😏

Bonus points if you can scrounge up some company swag that was made in the year an employee joined, and even more bonus points if it features a horribly outdated logo. 😂

9. Custom swag

Instead of looking back, create something new to truly distinguish a long-tenured employee! Fun t-shirts, pins, and patches are all great mementos and a visual indicator to other team members that they should be giving their congratulations. ServiceTitan, a Bonusly customer, goes as far as ordering a custom jersey with an employee’s last name and what number employee they came in at for their work anniversary!

Or even take it a step further and be like SnackNation by ordering a custom fat head to truly celebrate a team member’s place in the company.

cr. SnackNation

10. Special treats

We saved the best for last. Honestly, everybody appreciates a free lunch, happy hour, or their favorite dessert. Let them choose their treat of choice, or surprise them!

Whether it’s donuts, a sundae bar, or even a bucket of chicken fingers (you always have that one team member...), it’s a thoughtful gesture that shows the company cares. Plus, it’s a moment when everybody gets to take a break, celebrate their fellow team member, and enjoy. 🍰🍦🍩

X. Need more ideas? We’ve got plenty! Here are a few that don’t need much explanation:
  • Have storytime! Ask the person celebrating their anniversary what their favorite moments were, funniest stories, low lows and high highs, etc. (also a great team bonding and culture-sharing opportunity!)
  • Host a long-distance lunch gathering, with remote employees enjoying their lunches together through their screens
  • Tie balloons to an employee (or more realistically, their desk 😉) with the number of balloons corresponding to their years of tenure, or with a literal balloon shaped like a number!
  • Fly in remote team members for a mini-getaway and a chance to celebrate in-person!
  • Feature employee work anniversaries someplace visible, like on a special wall in your office, on a screen in a public gathering place like the kitchen, or even on your website
  • Offer a remote/work-from-home day
  • Designate a VIP parking spot to them for the day
  • Schedule a lunch with the leadership, and use it as an opportunity to gather feedback
  • Ask teammates for peer recognition, and format it in a special way, like in an animated video, mug, or framed print
  • Organize a coordinated round of applause or shout-out during an all-hands meeting (works for video conference meetings, too!
  • Decorate their desks
  • Social media shout-out
  • Create a post-it wall of appreciation from colleagues
  • Give them a shout-out in the company newsletter
  • Send a care package with their favorite goodies

The goal is always to celebrate the impact an employee’s had on their workplace, but it’s also important that they feel recognized all year long. Here’s how Bonusly customer InVision weaves in recognition throughout the year, and how they thoughtfully celebrate anniversaries in a way that makes an impact.

Recognition in Action: InVision Case Study

As an innovative user-experience and design company, InVision understands that their products can be built with just a laptop and an employee’s creativity. That’s why, even with a 800+ headcount, InVision is a fully remote company.

"It's about results, not where your IP address is," Mark Frein, InVision’s chief people officer explains. "We care about what you're able to do or achieve. If you're able to achieve something great while working wonky hours, then that's great."

InVision’s employees have the freedom of a flexible schedule, but it becomes a bit harder to high-five someone when they’re halfway across the world. So the question is, how do you recognize employees in a meaningful way when the team is scattered across the world?

“There’s no office to bring a cake to,” Julie DeBuhr, InVision’s Senior Director, Employee Engagement, says. “Public recognition becomes that much harder. We have to celebrate milestones in another way.”

It became important for InVision to find a tool that allowed them to practice recognition around the globe. It needed to translate well to different cultures and employees across the world, or even be easily exchanged into different currencies in the case of monetary rewards. This became a core part of InVision’s employee engagement strategy, with priority placed on improving employee recognition.

Which is where Bonusly comes in. 😉💚

“In terms of recognition and perks, the dollar amount and social aspect of Bonusly hits at those and feels more substantial than a plaque,” Julie says. “I know it resonates with our employees.”

Using Bonusly to celebrate work anniversaries was just one way to integrate recognition into InVision’s company culture. Having a consistent, automated work anniversary reminder has made a big difference in rewarding employees, and it gets easier as employees see more bonuses roll through their feeds. Julie explains that managers and peers are involved in work anniversary recognition through Bonusly comments and add-ons, which are publicly visible to the whole company.

“For some folks at InVision, the company has doubled in size since they joined—it can be easy to lose sight of their accomplishments during that time.” Julie says. “[It’s important to] recognize people for what’s happened since they joined—what have they seen, what have they done? What’s changed in that time frame? Tell those stories!”

“Celebrating [milestones like] work anniversaries communicates that InVision is a place for your career. It’s good to see other people who have been there a long time as an indication that InVision is a good place to be.”
–Julie DeBuhr, InVision’s Senior Director, Employee Engagement

But it’s also important to keep day-to-day recognition top-of-mind. Work anniversaries and other time-based milestones are just one aspect of InVision’s overall employee recognition and engagement strategy. “We look for any opportunity to connect,” Julie says.

Which is what employee engagement is all about, really. Nice job, InVision! 👏

Check out Donut’s partner content on the impact of time-based recognition strategies.

Now, let’s turn it over to you—what does your workplace do to celebrate work anniversaries, and how would you like to celebrate your work anniversary? Let us know! 👇

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We all know how much employees value positive feedback about and recognition for their work. But the same can’t be said about constructive feedback. Why do we fear these much-needed conversations, and why don’t we give them the priority they deserve?

As an HR consulting professional, I regularly mediate disagreements and coach managers on how to deliver difficult news. So I can tell you from personal experience: it doesn’t matter how many tough conversations you’ve had, giving constructive feedback is hard.

I’ve managed all kinds of hard conversations, from company closures and terminations to performance improvement plans, but sometimes, they cover topics as simple as personality clashes and misunderstandings. In this article, I’ll share the insights I’ve gained through years of coaching.

Conflict can be a good thing

Per Merriam-Webster, conflict can be defined as "a mental struggle resulting from from incompatible or opposing needs, drives, wishes or external or internal demands.”

…and it can also present a wonderful opportunity! Overcoming conflict helps us grow, learn, and change for the better. We need conflict in order to become our best selves, even in the workplace. Conflict has many purposes at work, and when it’s handled appropriately, conflict can strengthen interpersonal relationships within teams.

Improves employee and manager performance

Conflict is often caused by unmet expectations and other misunderstandings stemming from ineffective communication. Addressing conflict in appropriate ways helps people know, meet, and exceed expectations.

It’s amazing how well we can perform once we understand what is expected of us. Setting clear and realistic expectations for our coworkers, direct reports and managers sets us all up for success.

Improves relationships

Disagreements, handled with the proper care, can actually bring people closer together. Opening up to coworkers about a concern shows vulnerability, trust and transparency.

Providing our coworkers with feedback shows that we care enough about them to help steer them in the right direction. It also establishes healthy, needed boundaries and limits on behaviors we are willing to accept. You and your team members can learn more about one another and come to a deeper understanding through healthy conflict resolution.

Know your audience

It’s critically important that you understand how the person on the receiving end of your feedback will react and respond to you. Depending on your respective communication styles, the feedback may need to be delivered in a modified way.

Many assessments exist to help us identify our communication styles. DISC and Myers Briggs are two of the most widely recognized assessments, but there are also other similar tests out there, some of which are free. By having your whole team take a communication style assessment, you can better understand how to interact with each other and how to best provide feedback. Plus, it can be a fun team bonding activity. 💖

Most of these assessments break communication styles into four main categories. The names for the categories differ slightly from test to test, but they tend to share similar traits across the board.

The authors of the book How to Deal with Annoying People: What to Do When You Can’t Avoid Them do a particularly thorough job of explaining these categories and what they mean for providing effective feedback.

For simplicity, these are the communication styles I'll cover:

  • Driver
  • Expressive
  • Analytical
  • Amiable

Let's dive into each of these personality types, their strengths and weaknesses, and how to best approach giving them feedback.

Analyticals

People with an analytical communication style respect competence and expect accuracy from others. They care about the details, even seemingly irrelevant ones, and they expect you to as well. They cross their Ts and dot their Is, and their attention often pays off in the quality of their work.

However, their standards can be too high or unrealistic. They often suffer from “paralysis by analysis” and have trouble making decisions and starting projects. Analyticals can prefer the analyzing and planning phase to performing the actual work, and they often take a long time ultimately declare a project complete.

It’d make an analytical person very uncomfortable if you try to pressure them into making a rushed decision without providing supporting evidence as to why your idea is a good one. This, of course, can come across as highly offensive to Amiables and Expressives who value relationships and make decisions based on emotion. It also annoys Drivers who just want to check the item off their list and move on.

When giving feedback to an Analytical, make sure you support whatever you’re saying with documented evidence and specific examples. Do not expect an Analytical to change behaviors simply because what they’re doing makes you unhappy or uncomfortable. Analyticals understand their own working styles best, and can see your suggestions as a roadblock. Instead, focus on how what they’re doing fails to meet established expectations, and provide the specific criteria for that expectation. Support observations with facts and figures whenever possible. 📊

Example of feedback for an Analytical:

“In our review of your formal job description, we discussed the requirement to communicate effectively with other staff. In your recent peer review, 25% of your peers reported that your criticisms of their work made them less engaged and productive and even resulted in them making worse mistakes. When asked how you could improve your approach, they all reported that privately asking them for clarification when you have a question about their work would be the best approach. Moving forward, let’s follow this approach and not directly point out your coworkers’ mistakes, especially in front of other people.”

Drivers

Drivers are dynamic, goal-oriented individuals who are often found in leadership positions. They are highly productive, strong-willed, and exude confidence, but they can also make rash, impulsive decisions.

Drivers prefer to delegate work, particularly if they find it tedious. They hate getting bogged down with details and instead prefer to receive the high-level overview. Someone who is a Driver may be perceived as bossy, manipulative, rude, or short-sighted. This communication style particularly afronts Analyticals, who dislike recklessness, and Amiables, who don’t enjoy being pushed to do things.

If you need to provide feedback to a Driver, follow this simple directive: Be quick, be smart, be gone! Say what you need to see happen, provide a brief but meaningful reason for why they should adjust, and then let them get on with their day.

Example of feedback for a Driver:

“I’ve noticed several typos on the last three client proposals you submitted. I need you to slow down and double check your work before submitting it. Your performance review will be more favorable, and you’ll be eligible for a bigger bonus percentage, if you turn this around right now and I see very few mistakes moving forward.”

Amiables

If you have a coworker who is easy-going, good-natured, and supportive, you work with an Amiable. Amiables don’t like to rock the boat and are generally content with their day-to-day routines. They perform well under pressure and are often seen as stabilizing forces on teams. Although you might love working with an Amiable teammate, if you’re any other communication style, the Amiable probably finds you to be difficult to work with. 😝

One of the most important things to remember when providing feedback to someone with an amiable communication style is that they typically emotionally sensitive. They are the most likely to take feedback personally and see it as a personal failing. It’s important to take extra steps when providing feedback to Amiables to avoid them feeling hurt or offended.

Showing that you care about their personal growth and are providing feedback to help them be successful is the most productive way to give Amiables feedback. They are collaborative personalities, so suggest check-ins as they work on solutions to their problems.

Example of feedback for an Amiable:

“Thanks so much for meeting with me. I have enjoyed working with you these past few months, and I am so glad we are able to connect. Since I envision you becoming one of our strongest support reps, I want to make sure you’re equipped with the tools to get there. Currently, the time it takes you to close out an open ticket is averaging 5-hours longer than the goal we established. We need to fulfill our commitment to customers to completely resolve their issues in 24 hours or less. If you follow the SOPs that I shared with you step-by-step, every time, I am confident that you will achieve this goal.”

Expressives

Expressives are everything their name implies. They love to talk and tell stories, and they have tons of energy. Expressives are creative and inspirational, so they make great public speakers.

Their spontaneity and regular shift in focus, however, often results in poor planning, and they are often late to meetings. While Expressives always seem happy, they can be perceived as being “fake”. They also annoy others be not letting them get a word in edgewise. Drivers particularly dislike being held captive by long-winded, meandering Expressives, and their energy levels can completely exhaust Analyticals and Amiables.

Because Expressives need to feel heard, it’s important to include questions in your feedback to allow them to tell you what they think their opportunities for improvement are. It’s also important to not let them go off on a tangent or change the subject, so you may need to redirect them back to the issue at hand at least once.

Example of feedback for an Expressive:

“Thanks for meeting with me! I wanted to hear from you on how you’ve been doing and what areas for improvement you’ve identified. (...) Great, thanks for sharing that with me. I agree that you could focus more on closing sales. What can I do to best support you with this? (...) I can do that. What can I expect to see from you moving forward? (...) Great! Thanks so much for discussing this with me.

Tips for giving effective feedback

In his world-renowned book How to Win Friends and Influence People, Dale Carnegie explains how to give constructive criticism without alienating people. While his model certainly keeps the likeability of the person giving feedback intact, it has a few major drawbacks:

  • It’s not direct enough to effectively address the issues for Drivers.
  • It’s not specific enough to address issues with Analyticals.
  • Anyone, regardless of their communication style, might walk away from receiving feedback not understanding the consequences of unchanged behavior.

For these reasons, I've learned to blend Carnegie's trusted approach with the feedback formula proposed by Shari Harley in How to Say Anything to Anyone. The following steps outline the ultimate effective feedback approach, and like her book says, this isn’t strictly for supervisors—these are also great tips for peer-to-peer, interpersonal communications.

  1. Meet privately: Address the recipient of the feedback one-on-one. Privacy helps prevent embarrassment, and it also eliminates distractions.
  2. Begin with appreciation, humility and empathy: Thank the person for meeting with you, and explain that you know how difficult the issue at hand can be. Praise anything that can be praised before moving into the criticism. Explain the issue that is of concern and, if applicable, admit to any fault that you might share in the issue.
  3. Use specific examples of unacceptable behavior: The feedback recipient should be reminded of a recent, specific example of behavior that was not acceptable.
  4. Focus on the impact of the actions: Make sure that the person receiving the feedback understands why she needs to change her behavior (e.g. because it’s losing the company money, because it negatively impacting other peoples’ work, etc.). Explain how the behavior makes you feel.
  5. State your expectations moving forward: Communicate the changes you expect to see moving forward. It can be helpful to brainstorm potential solutions together, or ask how you specifically can help them achieve their goals.
  6. State your consequences: Let them know what could happen if the behavior continues. For example, someone’s brusque tone could alienate other team members or even how customers think about the company.
  7. Allow the other person to save face: Be gentle and empathetic—it’s hard to receive criticism! Leave the meeting with a smile and no indication to anyone else as to the topic of the meeting, and allow them to take the lead on addressing the issue with other team members or if they want to work on it privately.
  8. Praise any and all improvements: Be sure to communicate when you observe positive changes. This shows your team member that their hard work is seen, and that you’re paying attention!
Receiving Feedback

Just as important as giving great feedback is receiving feedback correctly. John Ford, Founder and Principal Mediator at the HR Mediation Academy, shared his thoughts with us on accepting feedback:

Feedback is vital for the well being of any important relationship, yet fraught with difficulty, especially in the receiving, because of our propensity to perceive it as an attack. When you remember that the purpose behind feedback is learning (not to embarrass or humiliate) it's easier to receive it non-defensively and assume that the person giving it has a positive intention. As with all key conversations, it's always a good idea to summarize at the end to confirm your understanding of the feedback given.
–John Ford, HR Mediation Academy

While this approach to receiving feedback can be broadly applied to all workforce members, there are a few additional considerations based on your role.

Supervisors, for example, should be especially sensitive to the fact that they have a certain degree of power over their subordinates. Supervisors should recognize that it’s extremely difficult and even scary for their team members to provide critical feedback if they fear retaliation. 🤐

For this reason, supervisors should actively solicit the feedback and let their staff know that it’s okay for them to voice their concerns. Then, regardless of the content of the feedback they’ve received, supervisors should show gratitude and encouragement for teams’ transparent communication.

Conclusion

By providing a psychologically safe workplace and a culture of constructive feedback in their departments, teams can capitalize on valuable learning opportunities and chances to improve.

In the end, my best advice is to always assume the best intentions! Unless you’re working on improving a toxic workplace, chances are that everyone on your team wants the best for the company. Listen—giving and receiving feedback is hard! But, the payoff includes better team communication and even more opportunities to recognize hard work.

For more best practices on how to effectively recognize and engage employees, check out our Guide to Modern Employee Recognition!

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Whether we’re new to a team or have been in the biz for years, we all like to think we’re experts at our jobs. We strive to build confidence in what we do among those who manage what we do. Very few of us want someone looking over our shoulders while we work.

Take, for example, the global positioning system (GPS). Decades ago, it was an exclusive way to track U.S. submarines carrying nuclear missiles. But now, it’s used throughout most of our everyday lives. We use it to check in on social media. We definitely use it to navigate an unknown area. Even employers are using the capabilities to track their employees while they’re on the clock.

Yup. GPS tracking is no stranger in the workplace, and it can benefit both employers and employees. But it’s easy to see why GPS tracking might seem unsavory to those it’s used on. Doesn’t it breed resentment and distrust? Let’s explore this together.

TSheets by QuickBooks, a time tracking software company, commissioned an independent survey of 1,585 employees over the age of 18 throughout the U.S. to learn more about their experiences with workplace GPS tracking. And attitudes toward the seemingly invasive practice might surprise you.

GPS is more about safety, less about privacy invasion

When employees think of a GPS tracking policy at work, the term “micromanage” may enter their minds... 

In a 2014 survey by Accountemps, 59% of respondents said they’ve worked for a micromanager at some point in their careers. For many employees, their employer’s desire to track their location could not only be an invasion of privacy, but a glaring distrust of their abilities. For employers, GPS tracking could provide some peace of mind about the efficiency of work being done.

But the line between micromanaging and monitoring can get a bit blurry. And while micromanaging may be true for some cases of GPS in the workplace, most employers have the best intentions behind tracking an employee’s whereabouts. Here are the top nine reasons employers gave in the GPS survey:


Plenty of industries—construction, transit, utilities, sales—have employees out in the field and at multiple job sites during all hours of the day. Making sure an employee is where they’re supposed to be not only ensures their safety but also helps prevent time theft, which, in turn, could help an employer save money or even help an employee earn what they should.

Companies with large fleets might implement GPS tracking to ensure driver safety, which also helps out with insurance costs. One cable company implemented a GPS tracking solution and within six months of deploying was able to improve driver behavior by 68%.

If an employee is running late for a job, their manager can give a waiting client a real-time update on the employee’s arrival. If a company car isn’t returned, an employer can see where it was last used. If an employer needs someone to go to an emergency job site, they can dispatch whoever might be the closest. GPS just makes sense for businesses in the 21st century.

Employees can warm up to GPS tracking

Most employers who want to implement GPS tracking are nervous to do so because of one thing: resistance. “My employees will never go for it.” Well, the TSheets survey found that’s not exactly true.

The majority of employees surveyed (57%) said they have concerns about GPS. It’s understandable. There are a lot of things to consider. What rights do employers have? Can an employee be tracked off the clock? What about breaks?

While invasion of privacy—especially off the clock—is a concern among employees, there are a slew of other things that have them a bit apprehensive about using the technology. Almost 21% of respondents said that battery drain was always a concern. Another 14% were always concerned with data usage when being tracked by GPS. Smaller percentages were concerned with inaccurate GPS locations and getting in trouble for not being where they’re supposed to be. Here’s a full breakdown: 

 

However, understanding how the GPS technology works is essential for a warm reception by those it’s used on. What we don’t know or understand innately makes us uncomfortable. But here’s the good news: Nearly three-quarters of employees surveyed say they have a strong or very strong understanding of the technology. And because of that understanding, 78% said they are comfortable with GPS tracking. In fact, 82% of the respondents believe GPS tracking at work is not an invasion of privacy. And of those who actually have experience being tracked, 65% reported a positive experience with it! Only about 4% said the opposite. 


Also noteworthy: TSheets conducted a similar survey in 2017 and saw a 10% increase in employees saying their experience with GPS was positive between then and now. This could indicate that discussing GPS tracking with your employees will be easier than you think, and the technology is well received (more on that later).

For employees, the appeal of GPS is in the money. The top benefit for them, according to those who have used it, is ensuring they get paid what they’re owed. It’s a bonus for both employee and employer that the feature holds both parties accountable. Checks and balances, people.

The answer for GPS acceptance is easy—communication

Creating a company culture that openly discusses GPS policies—including concerns from employees—is essential. So employers and employees, listen up.

While requiring GPS tracking when employees are off the clock isn’t legal or ethical, it can happen. When asked how employees would respond to such an event, 42% said they would have a conversation about it with their boss. But not all employees are so forgiving. One in 4 employees said if they were tracked off the clock, they would take legal action.

 

The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) says that aside from understanding the legal requirements and ramifications of implementing GPS tracking, you should be able to demonstrate that there is a legitimate business rationale behind the decision, such as:

  • Trying to improve response time and efficiency of routes.
  • Maintaining accurate timekeeping records.
  • Increasing safety and/or productivity and helping to prevent theft.

But here’s another important part of the equation—don’t be afraid to talk about it. This part is important for both parties involved. TSheets found that only 37% of employees who were unsure of the whole GPS thing actually raised their concerns with their employer. And of the 37% who did raise their concerns, only 41% said their employer fully addressed their concerns. This leaves nearly 60% with concerns that were never addressed. Here’s the breakdown of responses from employees when asked if they’ve ever raised GPS concerns with their employers:  

 

SHRM agrees on open communication. They recommend that employers provide clear notice to employees before implementing GPS tracking to avoid privacy (and other) lawsuits.

“One important practice is to implement a policy stating that there should be no expectation of privacy when using company-owned equipment and/or vehicles,” the organization says on their site.

Moreover, GPS monitoring should be limited to work hours and activities. And employers, don’t forget to address non-privacy concerns, like smartphone battery life if GPS data is collected by a mobile app.

Despite challenges, many employees have noted benefits of using GPS technology at work, namely peace of mind that they’ll be paid for their hours and increased accountability for themselves and their employers. With data showing an increase in positive employee experience with GPS in just two years, the practice is sure to not only be used more, but accepted.

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If you’ve ever walked away from a performance review confused about where you stand, you’re not alone. The art of giving clear, intentional, and valuable feedback is tricky to master, which is why so many employees have experienced underwhelming performance reviews. Since one of our core company values is “learning faster through feedback,” we always strive to improve in this area ourselves and share what we learn with others.

That’s why we put together this list of performance review phrases—for self-evaluation, managers, and peers—to guide you in the right direction and sharpen your ability to provide useful feedback.

Use the Table of Contents below to jump to any section:

Performance review phrases for self-evaluation Performance review phrases for managers
Performance review phrases for peers
Performance review phrases for self-evaluation

Self-evaluations can be awkward. You don’t want to pat yourself on the back too much, and it can feel uncomfortable to openly share your areas of weakness with others. One way to combat this mental block is to utilize phrases that are more objective in nature. Chris Zeller, an Executive Recruiter at Adecco, says:

It's always helpful to keep feedback rooted in observable behavior, which has nothing to do with intent or inherent traits.

This recommendation aligns with the Situation-Behavior-Impact (SBI) feedback model, which also aims to focus on facts and less on subjective assessments. To use this model, you structure your feedback around the following components:

  • Situation: Define the where and when to put the feedback into context.
  • Behavior: Describe the specific behaviors that you observed directly.
  • Impact: Explain how the individual’s action has affected you or others.

Based on this advice, below are self-evaluation phrases you can use:

Phrases for positive performance

I demonstrated [behavior] when I [example].

This phrase is effective when talking about your positive performance because it identifies strength and provides an example as a proof point. Since it’s not a subjective assessment of your personality, it’ll feel less awkward to talk about yourself. If you need more inspiration, we shared various applications of this phrase below.

  1. I demonstrated initiative when I wrote three additional blog posts this quarter.
  2. I displayed leadership skills when I led the engineering team through a feature release
  3. I showed dedication as a manager when I guided an employee through a work conflict.
  4. I demonstrated my collaboration skills by planning the holiday party with a full committee.
  5. I showed strong time management skills and teamwork when I took over my teammate’s work while he was on vacation and completed all my own tasks as well.

I successfully completed [project or milestone] and, as a result, achieved [results].

This performance review phrase is less focused on your behaviors and more focused on the results of specific milestones or projects you completed. This is a great phrase to use if you have strong data points to share. Here are a few sample phrases to consider for your next performance review:

  1. I attended five events and, as a result, exceeded my sales quota by 10% this quarter.
  2. I set up multiple goal checkpoints, which led to the marketing team hitting all its Q1 KPIs.
  3. I implemented a new update, which resulted in a 10% increase in website engagement.
  4. I finished a content audit and was able to pinpoint the gaps we need to address in Q2.
  5. I planned a successful PR offsite and, as a result, the team produced three fresh story angles to pitch next month.
Phrases for areas of improvement

I recognize that I could improve in [area of improvement].I plan to do so by [action].

While it’s tough to talk about the areas you need improvement in, this performance review phrase is helpful because it immediately offers a solution to the “problem.” This shows your manager that you’re proactive, self-aware, and driven because you’re taking ownership of your weaker areas. Kate Snowise, an executive coach and manager, says,

“There is one skill that can massively impact the way existing and emerging leaders are perceived by their peers and superiors: demonstrating initiative through being consistently solution-focused.”

Show how you are solution-focused in your self-evaluation.

Try these phrases based on the template above:

  1. I recognize that I could improve the way I run meetings, which I plan to do by coming up with more focused agendas.
  2. I know I need to speak up during brainstorms. I’m going to start planning ideas ahead of time so I feel more prepared.
  3. I recognize that I need to improve how I proofread my work, so I’m planning to make grammar and spell checks a routine part of my review process.
  4. I need to show more composure in stressful situations. To do this, I’m going to practice mindfulness and step away from my desk when I feel overwhelmed.
  5. I know that I interrupt others unintentionally. I’ve asked my team to gently let me know when I do this so I can be more aware of my actions.

I’m going to stop doing [action] because I know it results in [consequence].

This performance phrase is more direct. It pinpoints a specific action that you know has negative results or consequences, and it demonstrates your commitment to avoiding it in the future. Here are different ways you can use this phrase:

  1. I’m going to stop calling out people for mistakes in meetings because I know it can be embarrassing and isn’t the appropriate way to handle the situation.
  2. My goal is to stop coming to meetings late because I know it’s disrespectful of everyone’s time.
  3. I’m going to stop raising conflicts in Slack because I know messages can be easily misconstrued and some problems are better resolved in person.
  4. I won’t change project deadlines without alerting everyone else involved because I know it affects people’s workloads.
  5. I’m going to stop micromanaging my colleagues because I know it makes them feel like I don’t trust them.
Performance review phrases for managers

As a manager, you serve as the gatekeeper for your employee’s feedback—so there’s a lot of pressure to deliver it in an impactful way. The balancing act of delivering positive feedback while also providing constructive comments can be challenging. Sara Kaplan, Social Media, Content, and PR Manager at Weploy, suggests a specific framework to make the process a bit easier.

“At my company, I’m asked to give feedback in the following format: Stop/Start/Keep Doing—it helps frame things constructively!”

This framework is also beneficial for making clear to employees how they can take action on their own personal development. While development should be owned by the employees, managers can use these phrases to help track progress and keep them accountable.

Keeping in mind a constructive approach, below are evaluation phrases for your employees:

Phrases for positive performance

You excel at [action], and I would love to continue seeing that from you.

With this performance phrase, you’re calling out behavior that you want to encourage an employee to keep doing. This makes clear to the individual what they’re doing well and what’s expected of them for positive performance reviews—and potential promotions—in the future. The more specific you can be with this feedback, the more impactful it will be for the employee. See examples below:

  1. You excel at creating thoughtful marketing decks. I would love to have you continue taking the lead on them, especially since I know you enjoy the creative process.
  2. I’m really impressed with the way you revamped our weekly kickoff meeting. I want you to keep speaking out about processes you think could be improved.
  3. I appreciate the way you took ownership for and fixed the bug in the code. Please continue being as honest and proactive as you have been about your work.
  4. The way you handled the conflict on your team was so professional. You should feel empowered to continue addressing those situations.
  5. I really respect how you managed the expectations of the CEO about our PR goals. I would love to see you continuing to push back on anything you don’t feel sets our team up for success.

I encourage you to keep doing [action]. I’ve received positive feedback that this has really helped the team [result].

This performance phrase is a little different because it gives you the opportunity to incorporate feedback from the colleagues of the individual being reviewed—whether or not it’s anonymous depends on what your team is comfortable with. This way, your employee knows their performance or action is appreciated by people beyond just you. Here are a few ways to use this phrase:

  1. I encourage you to keep being a sounding board for your teammates. Many of your team members say you’re a great listener, and they feel comfortable sharing ideas with you.
  2. Multiple people mentioned how skilled you are at keeping everyone on track with tight deadlines, which has been beneficial for the team’s productivity. I’d love to see you continue to take the lead on this for future projects.
  3. I encourage you to keep building a relationship with our remote team. They told me how much they appreciate your consistent and clear communication.
  4. Our new hire shared that you were instrumental in getting her onboarded onto the team quickly. Is this a process you’d be interested in taking over in the future?
  5. I would love for you to continue sharing fresh ideas at the monthly brainstorm. The last one you suggested was one of our most successful campaigns, and everyone considers it to be a big win.
Phrases for areas of improvement

My feedback is for you to stop [action] because it results in [consequence]. 

This is a way to let your employees know that a specific and observable action they’ve taken is undesirable. And it gives you a chance to explain the negative outcomes, which is something the individual may not have been aware of in the first place. It’s important to make sure this action is one either you or a team member has witnessed multiple times—otherwise, it’s difficult to justify why your employee is receiving this constructive feedback. Below are a few sample phrases:

  1. My feedback is that you stop sending urgent emails late at night. You’re creating stress for the other team members outside of working hours, and it’s not a healthy habit.
  2. When you raise your voice during discussions, you make other people uncomfortable. This is something you should be aware of and not do moving forward.
  3. I’m aware that you cancel your one-on-one meetings almost every week. This isn’t acceptable given you’re a manager responsible for the career growth of multiple employees.
  4. I would like to see you stop waiting until the last minute to prepare your quarterly results. Your presentations tend to be scattered and don’t represent your team’s efforts well.
  5. My ask is that you stop using your laptop during meetings. It gives the impression that you aren’t engaged and is distracting for others as well.

I encourage you to start [action] because it will help you [intended result]. 

If you’re not comfortable asking an employee to stop doing something, you can flip it and ask them to start doing something instead. For instance, instead of asking them to stop being late to meetings, you can encourage them to start planning ahead for meetings so they get there early—pick whichever phrase better suits your management style. Here are some examples to illustrate this point:

  1. I encourage you to set an alarm a few minutes before a meeting starts so you come on time.
  2. It would be beneficial for you to start taking notes during stand up so you don’t forget any of the tasks or feedback that were shared with you.
  3. You should block off time on your calendar to get your administrative tasks done on time, which are easy to let fall through the cracks.
  4. I think it would be valuable to have a team member review your client emails to help you check the tone.
  5. I encourage you to start practicing flexibility when it comes to new ideas—it may help you discover time-saving processes.
Performance review phrases for peers

Many companies use 360 degree feedback, which is the process of collecting responses from peers who work with the individual being reviewed. Sharing feedback about someone you work with every day, who you may be friends with, is tricky - especially when the feedback is constructive. Christine Tao, Co-Founder and CEO of SoundingBoard offered her perspective on how to approach this challenge:

“Being specific and timely helps—the more you can catch or note the behavior close to when it occurred, the better. And when you share it, describe the impact that it had on you or others. You can also take this further by asking questions on what other actions they might take or change if the feedback is constructive.”

Another important thing to keep in mind: if your feedback is anonymous, that doesn’t give you the liberty to be harsh in your review. It’s never easy to be the recipient of negative feedback, so try to practice empathy—especially when sharing constructive feedback with a fellow colleague. Lauren Linzenberg, Founder & HR Consultant at MENSC{HR}, recommends doing a gut check:

“Make sure you're comfortable saying what you wrote in the review to the person's face. If you provide feedback that you wouldn't feel comfortable confronting in person, you may run into resistance.”

Phrases for positive performance

When you did [action], it really helped me [result].

This performance phrase identifies a specific instance—the more recent, the better - when you really appreciated your colleague’s contribution. This also follows the SBI feedback model and will help your peers understand what action, and why, was so useful to you. Here are a few ways to use this phrase:

  1. When you offered to take one of the writing projects off my plate, it made me feel supported because you recognized that I was busy and stepped in proactively.
  2. You saved me a lot of time when you pointed out the error in my code early.
  3. When you publicly gave me credit for the project we worked on together, it made me feel recognized.
  4. I really appreciate the feedback you shared with me about my communication style—it helped me identify and improve on an issue I wasn’t even aware of.
  5. When you supported my idea in the brainstorm, it gave me the confidence to advocate for my project.

I really appreciate it when you [behavior], such as when you [example].

This phrase shifts the focus from a specific action to a general behavior. However, that doesn’t make this phrase less valid or more difficult to understand because it’s still rooted in tangible examples.

An important note to keep in mind is the presence of gender bias (and other common biases that affect rating) when giving feedback. Our research has shown that managers and peers—regardless of gender—tend to give women more personality-oriented feedback and men more work-oriented feedback. Unfortunately, the former is less actionable and can contribute to the gender gap, so it’s critical to be mindful of this when utilizing these phrases. Below are a few examples:

  1. Your conflict management skills are so valuable, such as when you resolved our team’s dispute about processes last week.
  2. I really appreciate it when you give constructive feedback. Your feedback helped me refine my ideas for my last presentation, which ended up being a success.
  3. I love how you take ownership of problems—even when they’re not your own. It sets a great example for me.
  4. You’re great at solving challenging work problems. You helped me navigate multiple stressful situations by allowing me to bounce ideas off of you.
  5. I admire the proactiveness you brought to our most recent project because it helped me plan ahead and prioritize my work.
Phrases for areas of improvement

I think you could improve on [action] because [reason].

You’ll notice the language of this phrase is less managerial in tone. It’s more of a suggestion based on behavior or results you’ve witnessed, rather than an ask to “stop” a certain behavior since this is communication between two peers. Below are a few variations of this phrase:

  1. I think you could improve the way you share updates with the rest of the team. Sometimes, people get left out of the loop so not everyone is on the same page.
  2. An area you could improve on is prioritization—you’re always so willing to jump into new projects, which is great, but that results in unmet deadlines.
  3. I think you could improve on staying focused during meetings and brainstorms. Discussions frequently go off track because you want to take them in another direction.
  4. An area of improvement to consider is the way you edit other people’s work. It would be helpful to explain why you update something instead of changing it without context.
  5. You could improve the way you manage expectations with our customers so they don’t end up disappointed or upset down the road.

I would love to see you do more [action] because [reason].

Again, if asking someone to improve on something isn’t comfortable for you, another option is to say “I would love to see you do more…” to frame it in a more positive way. Here are a few examples to consider:

  1. I would love to see you take more ownership for your mistakes. Everyone makes them, but it makes the resolution a lot smoother if there’s no finger pointing.
  2. It would be great if you could recognize when you need help, and ask for it, so we can avoid any wasted effort or time.
  3. I would really appreciate it if you could be more open to other people’s suggestions because new perspectives can be valuable.
  4. I would love to see you be more thorough when handing off projects because it’ll make the transition more seamless.
  5. It would be great to see you engage more during our status meetings because it feels like you’re frequently uninterested in what the rest of the team is working on.

Hopefully, these phrases helped you better envision the type of feedback to incorporate in your next performance review. Remember that these are just starting points; you should feel empowered to mix up the phrases, tweak them to fit your management style or come up with your own if you didn’t see any that resonated with you. 

This post originally appeared on CultureAmp.

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