28/06/2023

Giving Feedback & Resolving Conflict to Build a Positive and Productive Work Environment

Business advisory

Jason Langford-Brown

Jason Langford-Brown hosted a webinar for TGSU called “Giving Feedback & Resolving Conflict”. Here’s what you need to know!

In today’s professional landscape, the traditional concept of appraisals has given way to a more dynamic approach centered around coaching interventions. Central to this approach is the effective utilization of feedback. 

Giving feedback is an essential skill for managers and leaders as it fosters growth, resolves conflicts, and strengthens relationships within the workplace.

How to give feedback?

Feedback serves as a valuable source of information that can provide individuals with insights into their performance, strengths, and areas for improvement. By offering feedback, managers can guide their team members towards growth and development. However, many people tend to avoid giving feedback due to various reasons such as fear, being too nice, emotional responses, concerns about hurting others’ feelings, being too busy, and more.

Feedback, when delivered constructively, can be seen as helpful information or a warning of what lies ahead.

To enhance your feedback-giving skills, Jason Langford-Brown recommends reading the book “Radical Candor: How to Get What You Want by Saying What You Mean” by Kim Scott. This book emphasizes the importance of balancing honest feedback and criticism with genuine care and concern for the individual’s well-being. 

Successful managers understand that practicing honesty and care when delivering feedback leads to positive outcomes and stronger relationships.

Help your staff understand what to do and know how to do it

Managers play a crucial role in the development of their team members. While formal training and educational resources contribute to about 10% of an individual’s development, the majority, 70%, stems from on-the-job experience. This experiential learning enables employees to tackle real tasks and issues, gaining valuable insights and growing their skills. The remaining 20% is derived from feedback, coaching, and mentoring from other people.

This feedback-centric approach helps individuals move from knowledge to proficiency by developing awareness, practicing new skills, and ultimately achieving mastery.

Understanding Human Needs

When giving feedback, it is essential to consider the human needs of the recipient. People need to feel understood, welcomed, important, and comfortable during communication. By acknowledging these needs, managers can create an environment where feedback is received positively and acted upon constructively. 

Providing physical and psychological comfort, demonstrating genuine interest, and making individuals feel valued contribute to building a culture of open and receptive feedback.

The Feedback Framework

To ensure the effectiveness of feedback, following a structured framework can be beneficial. The key steps include:

  1. Timing: Choose an appropriate time to deliver feedback when both parties are receptive and focused.
  2. Preparation: Reflect on the feedback you wish to provide, ensuring clarity and relevance.
  3. Questioning: Engage in a dialogue with the individual, encouraging them to express their thoughts and concerns.
  4. Listen, Look & Learn: Pay attention to verbal and non-verbal cues, seeking to understand the perspectives and emotions of the recipient.
  5. Giving the Feedback: Clearly communicate your observations, highlighting both positive aspects and areas for improvement. Use a balanced approach of honesty and care.
  6. Follow-Up: Maintain an ongoing conversation, supporting the individual in implementing necessary actions and monitoring progress.

Resolving Conflict is an Opportunity for Growth

Conflict in professional settings is natural but shouldn’t be confused with mere disagreement. Handling conflicts constructively helpteams grow, innovate, and achieve optimal outcomes. The three approaches conflict resolution are avoidance, forceful confrontation, and negotiation. 

Avoidance temporarily eases tension but ignores underlying issues.

Forceful confrontation damages relationships.

Negotiation promotes open communication and finding mutually agreeable solutions, fostering positive work environments and effective resolutions.

Stay tuned to our linkedin page for Jason’s next webinars!

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