Give and Receive Feedback Like a Pro!

Giving and receiving feedback is essential when it comes to having good communication within your organization, department, and team.

Feedback given in a constructive manner has the power to increase personal growth and happiness for both parties involved. Naturally, this is easier said than done! If you’re looking for some quick and easy tips to improve your feedback process, the PACE Staffing Network has you covered!  Read on to learn how to handle feedback like a pro!

How to Give Feedback:

First things first – you need to make it clear to yourself and the feedback receiver why you are having this conversation. Feedback should never come from a place of spite. Let go of any prior stress, jealousy, or fear, and let the main goal of the feedback be to help your colleague unlock their potential.  As Sam Walton once said,

“Outstanding leaders go out of the way to boost the self-esteem of their personnel. If people believe in themselves, it’s amazing what they can accomplish.”

It doesn’t matter what position you’re in – we all have the ability and responsibility to give constructive feedback to those we work with (remember, they have the same responsibility towards you!). Even if you don’t have any direct reports, you too can be a leader and enable those around you to believe in themselves.

On that note, keep in mind how you frame your advice. Feedback should always be specific. When feedback is given in euphemisms or “I wonder why…’s,” it isn’t nearly as helpful as stating concerns directly. In order to effectively give someone feedback, you should have an example of a specific situation, its impact, and what specifically could be changed to improve business objectives.

Allow time for a response to your feedback. If you breeze through the feedback and don’t give your colleague a chance to process and ask questions, how can you expect them to know what improvements to make?

How to take constructive criticism like a champ:

Stop and listen. Negative feedback may sting at first, but we all have to remember that it isn’t personal. Stop for just a few seconds and try not to react. You’ll thank yourself for it later.

Remind yourself of the benefits of constructive criticism. Without constructive feedback, how would we grow? If you’re receiving feedback, it’s because that person cares enough about you and your work performance to say something – that’s a good thing.

Let them talk and don’t interrupt. Giving nor receiving feedback is easy, so try and recognize that your colleague who is giving you feedback, isn’t having an easy time of it either. Give them the benefit of the doubt and realize that they may not be expressing their ideas perfectly – how many of us do that 100% of the time?

Portray active listening. This means paying attention to body language; are your arms crossed? Are you avoiding their gaze? Be mindful of the impression you are sending through your posture, tone, etc.

Ask questions! Seek specific examples to help you understand what the issue at hand is. From there, you can ask for advice on how to solve the problem or collaborate with your colleague to find a solution.

If you need more time to process, ask for it. Rather than respond heatedly in the moment, take your time to process this new information and reconvene at a later time.

Look your colleague in the eyes and tell them thank you. Even if you don’t agree with their assessment of your actions, you should acknowledge the effort they’ve made and take their view into consideration.

Feedback isn’t an easy process on either side, but it is a vital one.  My hope is that this article will help you become more comfortable with it. What’s that old saying?…oh, yes – practice makes perfect!

Key Take-Aways:

  • Take a deep breath and give the other person a chance to share their perspective.
  • If the feedback becomes a heated argument, take time for the two of you to think calmly and rationally about what has been said and schedule a time to meet again at a later time.
  • Use clear, direct statements in order to avoid additional confusion.
  • Don’t be afraid to ask questions.

For additional information and ideas about how to optimize your productivity and professional fulfillment, email me at or give me a call at 425.654.8788. I’m Lauren Molitor, the Partner Services Specialist at the PACE Staffing Network.  My job is making sure our client partners and partner- to-be are armed with the best practices on hiring and managing employees to optimal levels of performance.





The PACE Staffing Network is a leading Northwest staffing company who has been helping  local employers find employees and candidates fine jobs for over 40 years.  For additional ideas and information on how you can tackle the current marketplace – contact the PACE team at 425-637-3311 or email us at

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