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Foster an Effective Feedback Environment

Bolster your organization’s success by training employees to effectively give, ask for, receive, and act on feedback.

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  • Diane Magers, CCXP, Customer Experience Executive, AT&T
  • Christopher D. Lee, Author, Performance Conversations, Associate Vice Chancellor for HR Services, Virginia Community College System
  • Ben Olds, Organizational Development/Human Resources, Merrimack Pharmaceuticals
  • Judy Ringer, Author, Unlikely Teachers Finding the Hidden Gifts, and Founder, Power & Presence Training
  • Donna Forde, Director Program Manager, Leadership Development, Telecommunications Industry
  • Doug Lawrence, Certified Mentor Practitioner, President, Talent C- People Services Inc. Communications Group
  • Ken Boese, Employee Relations, Monteferro America
  • Robert Wolfe, Core Faculty, Experience Designer, THNK, The School of Creative Leadership
  • Alan Ovson, Speaker, Facilitator, Coach, Consultant, Founder of Ovson

Your Challenge

  • While the importance of feedback is well known, all groups within the organization exchange feedback in an infrequent or low quality manner.
  • According to the McLean & Company Engagement Survey database: only 47% of employees indicated that they’ve given the organization feedback for improvement, only 53% responded that their manager provides them with high quality feedback, and only 32% indicated that the executive leadership team acts on employee feedback (N=8,524).
  • Organizations need to foster an environment where all feedback actions are supported. Challenges in the form of getting leadership support, understanding what a feedback environment looks like, identifying where problem areas are, and developing training can get in the way.

Our Advice

Critical Insight

  • A feedback environment is an organizational climate in which all employees and the organization as an entity are comfortable and encouraged to give, ask for, receive, and act on feedback towards the achievement of organizational goals.
  • Many organizations or individual departments have pockets of a feedback environment embedded within them, but not many have an environment that spans all throughout them. Leveraging where a feedback environment is done well can be a first step towards expanding support for feedback actions across an organization or department.
  • The drivers that you use to measure employee engagement, are the same ones that impact the effectiveness of a feedback environment. These drivers cover relationships, empowerment, customer focus, rewards & recognition, and learning & development.

Impact and Result

  • Determine which areas to improve towards fostering a feedback environment by assessing the drivers of the environment in your organization.
  • Develop feedback driver initiatives, including feedback training, to target feedback driver development areas and get the organization and employees involved in improvement.
  • Foster an effective feedback environment as a result of initiatives and see an increase in employee engagement, enhanced recognition, improved employee recognition, and a positive impact on the bottom line.

Research & Tools

1. Assess the feedback environment and understand what drives it

Evaluate how effective the organization is by how each feedback driver contributes.

2. Discover the drivers that support a feedback environment

Learn about the job and organizational drivers of feedback, and what they look like in an effective environment.

4. Operationalize initiatives

Prepare to launch initiatives by finalizing training, communicating, and follow-up planning.

Guided Implementations

This guided implementation is a five call advisory process.

Guided Implementation #1 - Assess the feedback environment and understand what drives it

Call #1 - Review rationale for doing the project and discuss the state of the current feedback environment.

Guided Implementation #2 - Discover the drivers that support a feedback environment

Call #1 - Discuss how the engagement drivers support a feedback environment and how they are helping or harming the current environment. Provide advice for improvement.

Guided Implementation #3 - Design feedback initiatives

Call #1 - Review designed initiatives and receive feedback on how to prioritize and build initiatives further.

Guided Implementation #4 - Operationalize initiatives

Call #1 - Review training deck customizations and discuss planned logistics and how to set metrics for measured value.
Call #2 - Review communication plan draft and receive advice on follow-up activities.

Onsite Workshop

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Onsite workshops offer an easy way to accelerate your project. If you are unable to do the project yourself, and a Guided Implementation isn't enough, we offer low-cost onsite delivery of our project workshops. We take you through every phase of your project and ensure that you have a roadmap in place to complete your project successfully.

Module 1: Assess the Feedback Environment

The Purpose

  • Rationalize the need for fostering an effective feedback environment.
  • Assess how effective the current environment is for feedback.
  • Determine how feedback drivers in the organization help or harm the environment. 

Key Benefits Achieved

  • Identification of objectives for fostering a feedback environment.
  • Consensus on evaluation of how effective the feedback environment is.
  • Understanding of what drives a feedback environment and what an effective environment looks like.
  • Identification of how feedback drivers impact the environment. 




Identify your unique objectives for fostering a feedback environment.

  • Desired impact of the project on organizational goals.

Use the Organizational Feedback Diagnostic to assess the feedback environment of your organization.

  • Completed assessment of the feedback environment.

Brainstorm how current job drivers help or harm the feedback environment.

  • List of how job drivers help or harm the feedback environment.

Brainstorm how current organization drivers help or harm the feedback environment.

  • List of how organization drivers help or harm the feedback environment.

Module 2: Design Initiatives and Plan for Operationalization

The Purpose

  • Create initiatives to foster a feedback environment.
  • Prepare for feedback training.
  • Plan communication and how to follow up. 

Key Benefits Achieved

  • Understanding of how to formulate initiative and cover technology.
  • Development of initiatives to tackle feedback driver development areas. 




Review results and recommendations from the Organizational Feedback Diagnostic.

  • Understanding of direction on what to cover with initiatives.

Build feedback driver initiatives.

  • Initiative list to foster a feedback environment.

Customize the training deck.

  • Ready-to-administer training deck.

Plan out logistics for the training session.

  • Determination of the who, what, where, and when for feedback training.

Set metrics and plan for how to collect them.

  • List of metrics to measure success and impact of training on learning, behavior, and organization results.

Draft the communication plan.

  • Plan for how to inform executives, managers, and employees of feedback initiatives and/or training.

Customize the employee follow-up survey.

  • Ready-to-deploy list of questions to check in on employees 6-12 months after training.

Search Code: 78123
Published: July 17, 2015
Last Revised: July 17, 2015