Asking for feedback from your manager is probably one of the more challenging things that you have to do.
Other than your annual review, do you actually ask for consistent feedback? Most likely not…Here is how you can ask for feedback and drive a productive conversation about your performance and growth within the company and current role.
Schedule time to meet.
If your office or work environment is anything like mine, it is ALWAYS busy. People are running around, back and forth between meetings and are rarely ever at their desk. And that’s okay! Find time to set aside to have these discussions for 30 minutes or so and make sure that the agenda is clear. You don’t want your manager to be blindsided by what you are looking for in regards to your self-development. Set a cadence that works for the both of you whether it is weekly, monthly, bi-monthly, or just casual check-ins here and there, keep it as consistent as possible.
Ask Open-Ended Questions.
Think of the time together as a genuine discussion, because it should be. So many employees head into these meetings as if they are in interrogation when it is meant to be the exact opposite. These are the moments that you talk about the good AND the bad. There is no other way to grow if you are not challenged and constantly learning how to improve. Don’t wait until its time for your annual review for these types of questions. Get out in front of it, the feedback should be consistent throughout the year. Here are some examples:
1. What are some things I could have done differently or improve on?
2. What can I work on in order to get me to this ___________ (project, assignment, job)
3. Is there someone that could help me to build my strengths?
4. Am I meeting the expectations that you had for the team and business, if not, how can I raise the bar?
Set goals and actually work on the feedback that you receive. As a manager, when I provide feedback, I am looking for your ambition to make changes and force yourself outside of the comfort zone to reach those goals that we set together. If you don’t improve upon the areas that you were asking about, then what was the point of feedback in the first place? Also, ask for feedback from others. I always find that asking for perspective from people outside of your team is extremely helpful since they are not in the weeds with you on a daily basis. This is a true objective read from a co-worker that is standing on the outside looking in and their commentary could be helpful. Sometimes, these are my largest moments of clarity.
I always tell my team to keep a running file of accomplishments, complements or great call outs from others. For one, this is a great way to reference all the positive and amazing things that you have done during your tenure. Two, it is a convenient way to track feedback and accomplishments when it comes time to summarize for reviews. Be proud and take stand for yourself! You deserve it!
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“When you learn, teach. When you get, give.” – Maya Angelou
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