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10 tips every manager needs to support growth

We built this recipe to support your managers on their path to better feedback. 

We’ll explore ten practical tips for managers to support their team’s growth and productivity. Managers can use these strategies to help their reports develop their skills, enhance their careers, and become valuable assets to your organization. 

So, share with your managers, and we will dive in: 

1. Have regular feedback sessions 

Regular feedback sessions serve as a cornerstone in nurturing employee growth. These meetings provide a safe platform to bolster growth by enabling you to address performance issues, provide clarity on goals, and offer tailored developmental support, empowering your reports to improve and progress in their roles.

Ensure you are using constructive criticism when delivering any form of critical feedback. This means to use specific situations to speak to particular points of feedback before explaining the effect it had and ending with suggestions for improvements.

Features to use

2. Set SMART goals

Setting SMART goals for your reports is a powerful mechanism for you to channel their growth aspirations. These goals provide clear direction and purpose, aligning employees’ efforts with meaningful outcomes. 

To maximize employee growth using the SMART framework, make sure you set the goals with your report in a collaborative way. You can use 1:1 meetings to set the agenda for discussing goals and regularly update them.

Features to utilize: Objectives

3. Give constructive feedback

Constructive feedback is essential for employee growth and development. It involves being clear, specific, and actionable, and it should be delivered in a way that is respectful and supportive. 

Instead of relying on the classic ‘’sandwich method’, which can be ineffective, consider exploring alternative approaches that encourage open and constructive dialogues. These approaches allow employees to listen and engage with your feedback

Features to use: Anytime Feedback

4. Practice recognition and appreciation

Recognizing and appreciating employees’ efforts and achievements creates a positive atmosphere supportive of growth. It reinforces a sense of value and will likely encourage the positive behaviors to continue. 

Try setting up a regular cadence where you recognize your direct reports. Perhaps you want to ensure you are praising your reports every month, perhaps after every project that you complete. Whatever the rhythm, regular appreciation can boost morale on your team.

Features to use: Praise

5. Encourage self-assessment

Self-assessments empower your employees to take ownership of their growth. When employees engage in introspection and evaluate their own performance, they gain valuable insights into their strengths and areas for improvement. 

You can guide this process, helping your employees set realistic development targets and chart their own paths to success.

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6. 360-degree feedback

A 360-degree feedback approach goes beyond the traditional top-down evaluation and enriches employee growth. It incorporates input from peers, subordinates, and others who interact with your employee. 

This comprehensive feedback loop provides a more holistic perspective, enabling you to identify development areas more accurately and help employees improve their interactions and collaboration skills. Ensure you are digesting all peer feedback appropriately and making time to check in with individuals who share critical feedback about your employee. 

Features to use: 

360 Feedback 

7. Avoid toxic positivity 

Toxic positivity is a type of feedback that is overly optimistic or unrealistic. Unchecked, these can actually be harmful to your reports self-confidence and motivation. It can manifest in different ways, such as dismissing negative emotions, ignoring problems, or setting unrealistic expectations.

To avoid toxic positivity in your feedback sessions, remember to be honest, acknowledge negative emotions and challenges, and set realistic expectations. 

8. Document feedback

Keeping records of feedback discussions, goals, and progress helps you and your reports track growth over time, making it easier to identify patterns and improvements. Moreover, it ensures that there is a clear and well-documented history of feedback, which can be essential in making informed decisions. 

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9. Lead by example

Managers who lead by example exhibit the values and behaviors they expect from their team. Your actions and behaviors can serve as a powerful model for learning and growth. 

By embodying these qualities, you can inspire employees to follow a similar mindset and approach to personal and professional development. So ask yourself, how often are you meeting with your own manager, how often are you getting feedback about your own growth and development? Practicing these habits makes them more ingrained in your day to day life.

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10. Continuous improvement

Finally, remember that feedback processes should be dynamic. They should evolve over time based on the feedback you receive from their team and the changing needs of your reports.

Continuously assess and adapt your approach to ensure it remains effective in supporting your employee’s growth. You can send regular feedback requests or have face to face conversations about your approach in your 1:1 meetings. The point is to regularly be checking in on your methods of feedback and how they are landing with your team.

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By following these ten tips, you will be better equipped to guide your team toward their full potential. Remember, creating a culture of feedback on your team doesn’t need to be complicated or intimidating. It’s about building an environment of open, honest, and productive communication where every member has the opportunity to thrive.

Updated on November 9, 2023

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