Giving difficult feedback is a critical leadership competency and is essential to effective coaching. You can make a tough situation easier by using these tips:
Find the source of your discomfort. Is it fear of conflict, inexperience, or concern about damaging the relationship? Simply identifying your feelings can make it easier to put them aside.
- Role-play the feedback with a trusted friend or mentor. Ask them to respond calmly at first, then with an agitated response. Notice your reactions. Keep rehearsing until you feel more at ease.
- Remind yourself that your team wants feedback. A majority of employees report they don’t get enough feedback from their managers.
- Connect the feedback to the person’s motivations and show how it helps them reach their development goals.
Don’t expect perfection. Everyone makes mistakes at first. Remember, the more you do it, the easier it will get.