At the heart of every performance conversation, whether it’s real time feedback, check ins, formal reviews or growth and development conversations, is a relationship based on trust. It’s from there that we can bravely address constructive feedback, open up about personal ambitions, agree on a growth plan that defines an individual’s future. Without trust at it’s centre, the conversation, no matter how sophisticated the practice, will fall short of what it sets out to do. However, building trust between manager and employees has always been a great challenge for HR, as how do you build and measure something that can be as unquantifiable as trust.
So if our challenge is to ensure that our managers and employees have trusted relationships, so that our processes, such as real time feedback, check ins and reviews, can have real benefits, where can we begin our efforts.
Our first stop is to acknowledge that we are all blinded by our own perspective, We see the world through a lens that only we, as individuals, look from. This can blind us from a wider perspective on an individual and restrict us from seeing what others see in that person.
To eliminate the blind spots, we must bring wider perspective. Enter crowdsourced feedback, where peers, stakeholders and a wider cohort of individuals can contribute meaningful feedback to an individual. In order for that to happen effectively, we need a means to support people to give feedback in the optimal way.
Alternatively, you find yourself with a praise culture, where people are happy to give feedback but reluctant to share the more growth oriented and constructive feedback that can play a valuable role in accelerating someone’s potential and performance.
Building feedback cultures that embrace growth and constructive feedback with the same ease we embrace praise, takes time and focus but many organisations have taken this path and reaped the benefits of a growth mindset in their cultures.