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Once & For All: Stopping Sexual Harassment at Work

Posts Tagged ‘Evaluation and Feedback’

Reinforcing Great Work

Friday, January 3rd, 2014

Coaching & Management Training  VideosWe’ve all experienced the painful frustration of working hard and giving our utmost to a task … only to end up feeling unacknowledged and unappreciated. So, why are we so inconsistent in acknowledging the good work of others?

Because it seems there just isn’t enough time in our overcrowded day to stop and thank someone who’s doing good work. And, more often than not, we tend to take a “that’s their job, isn’t it?” type attitude.

And while it is true that people are being paid to do the work they’re doing…. if we want to keep good workers on our team and in our organization – and if we want their skills and capacity to grow – we need to acknowledge what they’re doing in clear, specific terms that will help them stay focused on doing the right things well.

It’s simple, really: when you see it, say it! Here’s how.

  1. Notice what’s right
    It’s a lot of fun to notice things done well – much more fun than our default mode of noticing when something’s gone wrong. So pay attention!
  2. Speak up
    Take 30 seconds to let them know you noticed. That’s all it takes: just 30 seconds. Of course, by all means take longer if you want!
  3. Be specific
    Generic “attaboy” or “attagirl” statements won’t help someone know precisely what they did well. Since you want them to develop those behaviors into repeatable skills and practices, tell them exactly what you saw.  Instead of “Hey, great job!” go for, “Hey, you were responsive and caring with that customer. She was upset at the beginning, but she went away happy – you did a great job listening and understanding her needs.”

You’ll discover that the good feelings go both ways: the people you appreciate will feel great about themselves and their work, and you’ll feel great about the positive impact you’re having on the organization.

Recommended Training Resource
Preview Practical Coach in its entirety for more on rewarding good performance as well as for information on correcting poor work and using a “2 minute challenge” to help turn around dead-end performance.

More Than A Gut Feeling IV

Thursday, December 19th, 2013

More Than a Gut FeelingFinding and recruiting new talent can be a tricky and draining process. Many times there is a huge number of applicants to deal with and picking the right person to join your team can seem daunting. Picking the wrong person could throw your entire organization through a loop which can not be afforded.

Our video More Than A Gut Feeling IV is the perfect training video for mastering behavioral interviewing techniques. This is the all-time best-selling interviewing training video based on behavioral science, fully updated and revised. This video clearly demonstrates how to ask the most effective questions for uncovering candidate’s past successes and past job performances. The hiring manager will be much more likely to make the right hiring decisions when given proper interview training. (more…)

Why People Don’t Get Feedback at Work

Saturday, November 2nd, 2013

Performance Appraisal TrainingOne of the most common complaints in the corporate cafeteria is,” My boss never gives me any feedback.” Then when the annual performance review, what human resources calls “performance appraisal,” finally arrives, the longed-for feedback doesn’t seem to happen. What is going on? Many of us blame the supervisor as uncaring and unsupportive, but the real culprit is the whole idea of performance appraisal itself.

Performance appraisal, practiced in approximately 80% of workplaces, gives supervisors and employees alike the wrong notions about feedback. The idea of a formal rating and written evaluation has conditioned us to think that feedback is something that is initiated by the supervisor as a once-a-year, formal, sit-down event. However, feedback is available to everyone every day. Feedback is not given mostly because people don’t ask for it – they’re just not aware that they can ask for it, and many people lack the skills to get the information they need. (more…)

Yes, It’s Personal

Monday, September 16th, 2013

Have you ever gotten an “attaboy” or “attagirl” that just left you feeling flat?Encouragement

The most common reason why appreciation misses the mark is simple: the person expressing acknowledgment failed to understand what’s meaningful to the person they’re acknowledging.

Unfortunately, when appreciation feels inauthentic, it creates disengagement instead of motivation.  We’ve all received acknowledgment like that, and so we know from personal experience how it leaves us feeling unseen, misunderstood, and weirdly unappreciated. (more…)

Since Nothing Is Wrong, Can We Assume Everything is Right?

Tuesday, February 22nd, 2011

By John McGuinness

Making assumptions is bad, right? The standard answer is ‘yes,’ because most of us have had those moments when we made a decision based on a certain assumption, and then discovered the decision turned out to be wrong because our assumption was wrong. Not good. And to make matters worse, the person pointing out our mistaken assumption probably also felt the need to become a linguist and write out “assume” as a three syllable word on a nearby white board. (Unfortunately, we know the punch line to that one.) (more…)

Avoid These 5 Leadership Pitfalls When Leading Knowledge Workers

Monday, October 25th, 2010

by Clyde Howell

According to the latest studies, the average employee is delivering only 50% of what they are capable of offering to your organization. As a leader, you’re frustrated by this lack of performance. You’d like to clone your high performers so you can become more results oriented like the entrepreneurial companies you see in the marketplace.

To capture the talents and potential of today’s knowledge workers, you must recognize the dramatic rise in numbers of these employees. Knowledge workers are the individuals who use their ‘brains’ instead of their ‘brawn’ to get work done. These are the information specialists, researchers, marketing and sales experts whose talents drive the success of your business. To ensure high performance, you must manage these talented individuals differently than employees of the past. (more…)

How to Give Feedback to Manage Performance

Thursday, January 14th, 2010

Receiving feedback on your effort, your attitude or your performance is the way that you learn, improve or are motivated to maintain a good performance. Giving feedback effectively and frequently is a key requirement of the role of Manager or Supervisor. Giving and receiving feedback should be a normal part of the Leader and Team Member relationship, a process that both parties understand and accept. It is best practice for the Supervisor to begin giving feedback as part of the initial training period, and to continue this in regular performance coaching sessions throughout the employee’s career.

Giving Positive Feedback

Positive feedback can be given any time, either in public or private. Positive feedback is where we praise a desired attitude, behaviour or performance. The effect of positive feedback is that the person is encouraged to repeat this behaviour and is also motivated to improve. It also builds self confidence and self esteem in the Team Member.

The reverse is also true! Lack of positive feedback is discouraging, demotivating and will lead to a poor performance level. The employee gets the impression that no one cares whether they do well or not, and that their work has no value!

Giving Constructive Feedback

The other type of feedback is Constructive Feedback, or Corrective Feedback. Again, this is essential to performance and motivation. Do not think in terms of NEGATIVE feedback as this is not a useful thought. The aim is not to point out the negative or the bad. If you do this, you will find that the person does not improve. You will find yourself saying the same things over and over again.

Giving constructive feedback is about TRAINING the other person to change or improve. If you do this well, you training is successful and will see the desired result. Giving constructive feedback is about identifying an area for improvement and working out solutions to improve or correct this. In giving the feedback, first identify the current goal or task and why this is important to the Company and to the role. Secondly, state clearly the undesirable attitude, behaviour or performance, with factual evidence. Thirdly, state the desired attitude, behaviour or performance, or better still, ask encouraging questions to help the other person make constructive suggestions. Lastly, work with them to put a strategy in place for achieving the desired goal.

Guidelines for Giving Feedback Effectively

1. Understand that the feedback is primarily a training need. Be aware that you are the supervisor, and are ultimately responsible for this staff’s behaviour. This feedback is aimed at improving knowledge and behaviour.

2. The key is to talk about the behaviour, performance or attitude rather than the person.

3. Have a good working knowledge of your own learning style and the other types of learning styles. This will help you avoid the pitfall of explaining in a way only YOU would understand. Other people are not always like you!

4. Know your Team Member, their personality style and their unique learning style – Are they a visual, verbal, reading & writing, tactile? Do they have language and cultural complexities?

5. Know your own limitations – If you are giving feedback on a volatile situation, make sure you can recognize your own emotions, and are aware that you may need to calm down before feedback.

6. Give constructive feedback in private – Never give constructive feedback in a group. You would not want to receive it in front of your staff!

7. Always start with positive – When giving feedback you always start with at least two positive observations. This will start the meeting off on a positive note.

8. Look at the individual – make eye contact, don’t avoid. If you do, they may question the validity of your session.

9. No apologies – do not apologize for their actions that need correction. Don’t say, “I’m sorry to tell you this, but…”

10.  Give constructive feedback in an honest and diplomatic way – that is, while pinpointing the target behaviour, state the constructive measures to change the behaviour. Remember, constructive feedback is a means to improving situations by finding a solution to the problem. Give a due date for follow up. The point is to teach a new skill where there was a deficiency.

11.  End with a positive – If it was a particularly lengthy/ gruesome session, interact with the staff to make sure things are ok. Be sure that you have checked in with them before you leave for the day. You want to make sure they are not going home disappointed.

12.  Ask if they have any questions – if you have given a feedback session, you may not have realised that you were the only one talking for quite some time. Always give the staff the opportunity to seek further knowledge or assistance.

Kate Tammemagi specialises in Management Training in Ireland. She designs and delivers People Management Training and Customer Care Training.

Need help in this area? CRM Learning’s Positive Discipline training program helps leaders get beyond the belief that confronting negative performance has to be punitive in nature and shows them — with a simple 5-step process — how performance discussions can actually be a tool for developing employees.

Holding Others Accountable Role Play

Monday, April 6th, 2009

In high performance organizations, individuals not only strive to keep the commitments they make, they are also willing to confront co-workers who don’t keep theirs.  However, holding others accountable can be awkward—especially when the “other” is a peer.  This role play enables both team leaders and team members to work through the discomfort of these situations in a non-threatening environment.


“A Little More Time” Role Play Scenario

Marketing VP Kimberly is preparing her 45-person consulting firm’s major proposal for a year’s worth of work from a major client.  She knows that demonstrating the staff’s depth of experience will be the key to winning this contract.  That means a strong, focused, well-written resume section in the proposal document.


At the weekly managers’ meeting, Kimberly asks Sam to take responsibility for collecting the resumés and background information from seven team leaders who will have key roles on the project.  Sam will need to make sure the resumés are up-to-date, consistent in format and clearly focused on the client’s industry.  Only four of this group are present at the meeting.  Sam is one of the seven.  He willingly accepts ownership for the task and aims to please.


It is three weeks until the proposal is due.  Sam and Kimberly meet to discuss how the resumés will be used in the proposal—but they don’t spend time discussing the actual process of collecting and updating them.  Kimberly expresses her appreciation to Sam for taking on the task, and he agrees to have the updated resumés to her in ten days. No problem—it all seems straightforward enough.


Ten days later, 3:30am.  Sam is working at home the morning before his deadline.  He is rewriting two of the resumés, and he is missing another two altogether.  Sam was certain he had emailed these managers to request their resumés,—they work in one of the firm’s out-of-state offices and he doesn’t know them well.  His own resumé and the ones he received from two other team leaders are in good shape.  He decides to ask Kimberly for two more days to complete the assignment.


Set Up the Role Play

Instruct participants to read the “A Little More Time” scenario (above). Have them role play two ways of concluding the scenario.

1) First, role play Kimberly responding when Sam comes to her to ask for several more days to complete the assignment.  One partner plays Kimberly, the other plays Sam. Allow no more than five minutes for this role play.

2) Second, role play a scene between Sam and one of the team leaders who has not provided their information to Sam.  One partner plays Sam, the other plays the team leader. Allow no more than five minutes for this role play.


Debrief the Role Play Activity


Ask the participants:


1. How comfortable were you in the first role play where Kimberly was responding Sam’s request for more time? 


2. Did people find it more difficult to hold a peer accountable in the second role play? If so, what made it more difficult?


3. What are some things a person should do when holding another person accountable?

Look for responses such as:

·       First, ask yourself, “How may I have contributed to this poor result—was I clear about what I needed?”

·       Don’t jump to conclusions, hear the other person out.

·       In the discussion, use “I” statements such as “I have trouble keeping my commitments when I don’t receive your information by the deadline.”

·       Work together on a plan to rectify the situation and determine how to keep it from happening again.  

·       Ask “What do you need from me? More notice, more help, better instructions, etc.?”)


4. What are the consequences of not confronting those (either subordinates or co-workers) who have not kept a commitment?

This material excerpted from the Leader’s Guide to the video program, Accountability That Works!.

Training Success Story: CRM’s “Positive Discipline” Exceeds Expectations

Wednesday, November 19th, 2008

The ROE Report Results: A recent “Return on Expectation” (ROE) study for CRM’s popular training video Positive Discipline has shown that customers love the program’s simplicity and practical advice for turning a negative and dreaded part of work life, into something ultimately positive.

Customer expectations with Positive Discipline were met or exceeded more than 90 percent of the time, the study found. Both individuals and organizations have rated their experience as “highly satisfactory” in an independently-conducted study.

About the Video: Positive Discipline takes a common-sense, non-adversarial approach to one of the toughest parts of being a manager or supervisor. What’s usually a nightmare becomes an opportunity – the key is putting the ownership of the solution in the hands of the employee. This performance-based program offers practical, step-by-step methods for overcoming problem behaviors.

Survey Methodology: A variety of clients participated in the survey, from business, education non-profit and government sectors. Interviews lasted 30 minutes each, and each client was told that answers would be anonymous and aggregated into a central database in order to ensure unbiased feedback.

Training expectations: Training frequency varied widely – some clients reported using the program once every three to four months for managers and supervisors; others six times a year as part of a leadership training program, and one client uses it regularly as part of an ongoing supervisory program for all managers.

“I wanted scenarios, examples and I wanted a methodology to handle discipline situations”, one client said. The program delivered with a practical, step-by-step process. One client specifically mentioned the “journaling” process that was particularly helpful with tardiness and attendance issues. “Managers now have specifics when talking to employees.”

Most clients reported purchasing the program simply to help managers and supervisors deal with difficult situations. “They were struggling with this,” one participant said. “They don’t want to feel like the bad guy.”

Clients especially liked the program’s performance-based methodology. “We wanted something that provided a solid outcome.” Other respondents praised the program’s adaptability, saying the complete package provided solutions for managers and supervisors on a variety of levels.

How Behavior Changed: “After the last class, several managers in operations e-mailed me saying they’d been able to handle the difficult situations they’ve been dealing with,” one client reported. “Our front-line supervisors have used the skills from the program and reported it working well – they found it much less adversarial.”

One participant said the program was especially helpful for first-time managers. “It has the potential to reduce employee litigation, improve morale and reduce turnover,” another client thought.

And everyone agreed on this comment: “Anecdotally I have heard that it saves time and a lot of trouble – we’re learning to deal with things before they completely explode.”

View Trailer or Full Length Preview of Positive Discipline


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