Feedback Culture

How often do your employees give each other feedback? In a successful culture, employees are good at both giving and receiving feedback. Giving and receiving feedback is important to constantly develop as an individual and as a company. It's important to build an organisation with a positive feedback culture and, as with most things, it all starts with leadership.

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Our need for continuous personal and professional development is a strong driving force in today's society. In our quest to improve ourselves, we want to look out for feedback in its various forms.

As a leader, you need feedback to obtain a 360 view on what you can do better, and which of your current efforts are appreciated. As an employee, you want to hear from both colleagues and your leaders when you do something well, and also when something could have been improved.

The challenge lies within the fact that many organisation do not have the psychological security, or the smoothest processes, for employees to be able to give and receive constructive and continuous feedback. There is simply no feedback culture.

What is a feedback culture?

When we talk about building a feedback culture, we are looking to build a culture in which employees feel comfortable giving and receiving feedback. We are also looking at creating workplaces where staff feel encouraged to give each other deserved praise without prompt from their managers.

Having a feedback culture contributes to a culture of learning and self improvement where development is prioritised and feedback becomes a natural part of everyday behaviours at work.

Creating a feedback culture is not only important to make your employees happy and develop. It leads to more benefits than that!

An example of the importance of a feedback culture is that it increases productivity. Studies show that productivity increases by 14% in companies where you the staff and leaders pay attention to each others behaviours with constructive feedback and that 79% of employees experience that praise makes them work harder.

Your job as a leader is partly to create a safe place for your employees to give and receive feedback, but also to give well-deserved praise to your employees. In this way, you show the way by example and you can start to build a positive feedback culture.

How do you create a positive feedback culture?

So how do you build a positive feedback culture? It's not just about showing more appreciation at work. To support the building of a culture of feedback, there must also be a clear system in place for how to internally handle feedback between employees and people managers.

Here are three tips on how to create a positive feedback culture:

  1. Encourage employees to give each other praise. With this, you build stronger relationships, create a positive team spirit and improve collaboration in your organisation.
  2. Act on feedback. Only by acting on feedback, do you show that you take the opinions seriously. Only by acting on the feedback, can you start building the feedback culture.
  3. Have individual conversations when they make a difference. Effective, 1-1 conversations help you build a relationship with your team members, and create a safe place to give and receive feedback.

In order for you to understand exactly how to create a positive feedback culture, we have written a detailed guide; 8 Principles for Building a Positive Feedback Culture - For Happier, Higher Performing Teams>

Importance of open discussions and a feedback culture

For a company with over 500 employees, it can sometimes be challenging to get an overall picture of how people feel about their work environment and job responsibilities. The cable supplier Nexans is, therefore, actively working with Winningtemp to improve its leadership, employees’ working conditions and job satisfaction.

By diving deep into the questions related to leadership, Christer Snäll notices significant opportunities for development. He feels that as leaders, you should not be afraid to ask open questions to the group if the results haven’t been as good as you might have expected.

“It’s a matter of daring to address all issues, even those that are directly negative to one’s leadership,” he says. “It’s only by talking about problems that you can come up with solutions and make improvements. I strongly believe in open leadership and open discussions. “

Answering the four weekly questions has become as natural for the employees as punching in and out.

Read more about how the Nexans encourages a positive feedback culture here >

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