Expert Panel

Common job issues and solutions in First Time Manager or Supervisor

3 Little Changes that will Make a Big Difference With Your Feedback


{#/pub/images/3LittleChangesthatwillMakeaBigDifferenceWithYourFeedback.jpg}"I want your feedback"


We all say it.  We all think we want it.  We all are surprised when we don’t hear anything.


According to dictionary.com feedback can be defined as “a reaction or response to a particular process or activity” and taken further to “evaluative information derived from such a reaction or response.”  I was surprised at how simple, yet not really helpful the definition was.  We always think of feedback being a lot more involved, or complicated.


How many times as an employee have you been told that someone is open to your feedback?  

That the door is always open?  

How many times did you take the opportunity to give unsolicited feedback?

Most of us have heard it many, many times and yet have rarely given feedback.  That is because it is too vague for us to add any value to.  If I am trying to think of anything you ever did that was ineffective, my mind would just go blank.  


As a first time manager, it is very important for you to get feedback.  You are learning so much, and developing your way of leading.  The right feedback can help you find your groove much quicker.  The wrong feedback can have you wasting time on things that just are not that important.


One manager I was working with was trying to be open to suggestions and feedback from his new team.  They wanted to be able to bond and be a closer group than they had been in the past.  The new manager took this feedback and spent a lot of time planning after hour outings and social activities that not everyone was able to attend.  Unfortunately, this did not help the team bond and become closer.  Had he solicited feedback from others on his team, he would have found that a few more open discussions in their meetings would have solved their needs.


3 Little Changes that will Make a Big Difference With Your Feedback


1. Ask for specific feedback.


It seems obvious, but we all get busy and sometimes do not realize that we are not being specific.  Especially as a new manager, what do you want people to give feedback on?  


If you are working with a team member and are trying out a new way of conveying information, ask questions such as “is there anything else that would make this more clear for you?” or “does this format for this type of information make it easier or harder for you?”.


If you are looking for feedback from your boss on how you are doing, ask questions such as “did the report I send you give you all the information you needed?” or “is how I let you know about this problem the best way?”.


2. Wait for the feedback.


All too often, we ask a question and do not give the person time to think and respond to it.  Especially when it comes to feedback, it is best to sit and wait for the response right then.  The odds of someone thinking about it and getting back to you are pretty slim.  Ask for the feedback you are looking for and then quietly wait for a response.


3. Do something with the feedback.


The best way to get more and more useful feedback is to take action on the feedback you receive.  If you are told that your report needs to be shorter, make it shorter.  If your team says that how you are asking them to serve their clients is causing problems, make adjustments or ask for more feedback until you find a solution.  Lack of action on the feedback you receive will start to shut people down.  Why give you feedback if you aren’t going to do anything with it.


If the feedback is that all is well, great!  Take the time to thank the person for telling you that and then ask them one more question…”is there anything else I should be looking for feedback on?”  We can only ask about what we know about or are thinking about.  There might be something you had not even considered as an issue.  Opening the door will help you get the feedback you really need.



We all need feedback in order to continue to grow and learn.  As a new manager, feedback is a great opportunity to speed up your learning curve.  Follow these simple tips to accelerate your results.



{#/pub/images/EmilieShoop2014.jpg}Written by Emilie Shoop, Creator and Leader of Shoop Training & Consulting A sought after Coach, Mompreneur, Strategist, Mentor, Speaker, Author, Trainer & Business Consultant, Emilie works with people who are ready for that next level of success, and realize how they work with people is KEY.  Her coaching will help you lead, delegate, sell, collaborate, perform, influence, and relate with people to launch your success to the next level. She provides clients, teams and organizations the skills and tools for leadership and professional excellence.


Do you have a management question for Emilie?  Post it in our First Time Manager/Supervisor Community and she will be happy to help: Ask an Expert


Did you find this story informative?  We would like the opportunity to keep you up to date on all of our training articles.  Please Sign Up for our newsletter so we can do just that.  


Here are some related articles you may be interested in:  


First Line Managers Set the Tone for Team Culture

How To Give A Meaningful Compliment

Leading Through Change: Persistence and change agents are...

Lost in Translation, Again!

Managing Conflict: Six Things NOT to Do


 About ManagingAmericans.com

We are America’s Management & Leadership Center for Professional Development. Our well-rounded business content is designed for Leaders & Managers to implement change with ease & improve accountability amongst their teams. Here you’ll find Articles from 30+ Expert Consultants, Coaches & Thought Leaders, access practical Business Templates, learn new skills & connect to our Expert Panel to answer your organizational challenges.


What part of your transition to management has been the most difficult?