As a leader, inviting feedback can be difficult. It can also be intimidating for employees to review their bosses. However, receiving that evaluation is crucial to becoming a better leader and boss, and being able to provide feedback is important for employees.
Furthermore, receiving feedback shows employees that leaders are committed to the success of the company and willing to make changes in order to see that success. So as a leader, the next time performance reviews come up, make sure to ask for feedback from employees. Here’s why:
1. Learn what makes employees happy.
While the Society for Human Resource Management's 2014 Employee Job Satisfaction and Engagement Survey found 81 percent of employees are satisfied with their jobs, there’s always room for improvement.
Related: Does Your Staff Dislike You?
By asking questions such as “What is your least favorite part of your day and why?” and “Describe your ideal workplace?” leaders can learn what makes employees happy. Once managemtn understands what people are looking for, steps can be taken to create an environment that keeps people happy and turnover low.
2. Foster a culture of open communication.
The days of employees being afraid of their managers are over. At least, they should be. Companies should strive for a culture of open communication, and having 360-degree reviews can help with that.
Asking for feedback shows employees that leaders are approachable and willing to listen to constructive criticism. It also shows they take what employees think seriously and are willing to make changes, which makes for a more open work environment.
Additionally, it ensures that everyone is getting appropriate feedback. Being a manager is no small task. It is important to check in with direct reports to see how things are going from their perspective and help managers continuously improve their management skills.
3. Learn what areas they need personal growth in.
Nobody is perfect, and while leaders are used to offering growth strategies to those around them, they can be blind to areas in which they need improvement.
There are lots of skills required to be a good leader, including organizational skills, listening skills, management skills, negotiation, problem solving, etc. Nobody will be perfect in all of them, and asking employees for feedback, while hard to hear, can be instrumental for the growth of leadership.
4. Learn what they’re doing right.
Sure, a review may include some points that are difficult to hear. But it’s also a chance for employees to let management know how they are successful. A review is the time for employees to discuss both positive and negative aspects of the company and leadership.
5. Ideas for the company may emerge.
Employees are a great untapped resource for ideas for the company. A 360-degree review is a great time for ideas to surface, as it’s an open discussion between employer and employee.
Ask if the employee has any ideas about how meetings, processes or protocols could be conducted differently. Leaders may be surprised what they come up with.