About Us

About Us
Lorem Ipsum is simply dummy text of the printing and typesetting industry.

Contact Info

684 West College St. Sun City, United States America, 064781.

(+55) 654 - 545 - 1235


Six Steps To Help You Turn Feedback Into Positive Action

Photo by MART PRODUCTION via Pexels

6 steps to help you turn feedback into positive action

In this age, where communication can make or break a business, the process of sharing feedback with employees about their performance, skills, or behaviour at work is of utmost importance.

But many a time, the feedback given can be harsh – and affects employee confidence, which can in turn undermine motivation, and makes employees doubt their abilities.

Feedback should focus on helping employees to perform at their optimum capability, and should be geared towards recognising and celebrating employee accomplishments.

In order for feedback to serve its purpose, employees must be open, and managers must listen as much as they share. When feedback becomes a two-way stream, employees are more responsive to it.

Here are some ways to help employees turn feedback into positive action:

Acknowledge your emotions – Take a deep breath and see the situation for what it is – Is it a story or is it real? Is it about me or is it about work? Feedback can result in a host of negative emotions – frustration, stress or anxiety. It’s important to recognise these moments as opportunities for self-reflection and growth, allowing you to gain insight into your emotional triggers and develop strategies for managing and processing your emotions healthily and constructively. Instead of resorting to unhelpful behaviours like aggression or blaming others, it’s crucial to process these emotions healthily. Managing emotions is a learnt skill. Self-regulation is the core of managing emotions. You might feel hurt, angry, defensive, ashamed, or confused. These are natural and human reactions, and you don’t have to suppress or deny them. However, you also don’t have to act on them or let them cloud your judgment. Instead, try to name your feelings and accept them as valid, but temporary. This can help you calm down and avoid overreacting or shutting down.

Take away: Do not take any action when you are feeling intense emotions.

Seek clarifications – Asking for clarification means seeking more information or explanation about the feedback or expectations you receive, to ensure that you understand them correctly and avoid confusion or misinterpretation. Clarifying feedback and expectations is not a one-way street. You should also ask for clarification and feedback from your team, managers and other stakeholders. Asking for feedback means requesting input or opinions about your own performance, behavior, or results, to learn from your strengths and weaknesses and improve your skills and knowledge. To ask for clarification and feedback, you should use open-ended questions, listen actively, and express appreciation. Some examples of open-ended questions are:
If you felt their feedback was general, ask for specific examples. 

  • In what ways do you think we could approach this differently next time?
  • Can you give me specific areas I can focus on to improve?
  • Can you share your perspective on the current challenges facing our team or department?
  • What opportunities do you see for me to take on more leadership responsibilities or projects?
  • How can I best support the team’s goals and priorities moving forward?

Take away: Ask; Don’t attack.

Take ownership – Think of feedback more in terms of knowing where you are right now, in relation to where you’ve come from and where you’ve targeted yourself towards. Feedback must be used as an opportunity for growth and development. Continuously seek feedback from others and use it to improve yourself professionally and personally. Work together with your boss to solve problems, achieve goals, and improve performance. Remind yourself of the goals and career aspirations that led you to apply for and accept a job offer can help you remotivate yourself about your job duties. Your ability to remember why you chose your current job also allows you to reevaluate your career goals and develop strategies for achieving those objectives.

Take away: Listen to the feedback, and evaluate it later. Don’t deny and get into a defensive mode immediately.

Evaluate the feedback – The more specific the feedback, the easier to categorise it. Vague feedback can lack actionable steps. good job” or “well done” doesn’t provide specific feedback on what was done well. This type of feedback doesn’t help the employee understand what they did right and how they can replicate that success in the future. So seek specific examples, to help you understand. This also goes for your weak points. Another important distinction to make is whether there is a recurring pattern in the feedback from multiple sources. In which case, it is worth reviewing. It is also not prudent to overlook positive feedback. It highlights your strengths.

Take away: Look at it from the third person perspective. It will offer objectivity.

Decide on an action plan – Once you evaluate the feedback, it is time to address the gaps or issues raised. If any guidance or mentorship is needed, go on and ask for it. The main point of an action plan is to ensure you don’t overlook critical tasks and milestones of your project. In its simplest form, developing an action plan entails listing tasks you need to complete and prioritising the feedback you receive by considering its relevance to your goals and areas for improvement. Categorize feedback into different levels of significance to address the most critical issues first. Once your plan is in place, demonstrate your progress and results. Seek feedback regularly and show that you are committed to your professional development.

Take away: Your action plan can be interim and does not need to be the final goal.

Learn to grow with the feedback – The key is to use the feedback as a catalyst for continuous learning and development. Seeking new opportunities, challenges and resources to enhance your knowledge and skills. Apply your learning to your current and future tasks and projects, celebrate your achievements and acknowledge your mistakes. Turn feedback into actionable steps by breaking down larger goals into smaller, manageable tasks. This approach makes it easier to track progress and ensures that you don’t feel overwhelmed by the changes you need to make.

Take away: Follow up. Reflect on your feedback cycle and see what worked well and what can be improved.

When receiving feedback, employees have to maintain a positive and respectful tone, and avoid blaming, complaining, or making excuses. Listen actively, and ask for feedback in a constructive and specific way. Express your opinions and suggestions, but also respect your boss’s authority and decisions. Insight is not about having your house in perfect order, but rather that you’re clear that tidying needs to be done, and you can identify where it’s needed most.

Feedback is not only a way to measure and improve performance but also to build accountability and ownership in your team. By giving and receiving it effectively, you can empower the entire company – both managers and employees to take charge of their work and development. To create a feedback culture the management needs to set the tone and expectations by communicating the purpose.

The key response to constructive feedback is not to compare yourself with others, but rather try to be a better version of yourself every day.

At Yellow Spark, we can help you set up an effective system of continuous feedback for your teams. To know more write to us at contact@yellowspark.in

Author Profile: Deepam Yogi is an adventurer at heart, socially conscious in her gut and professionally a strategic consultant. She co-founded Yellow Spark to support organisations to build workplaces that people love being a part of. Deepam describes herself as a shy yet opinionated writer and firmly believes that most answers to complex issues lie in simple communication.