You probably don’t get enough feedback from your boss. Your team members don’t, either.
Feedback’s vital to calibrate and communicate shared expectations. Feedback is how we acknowledge that people have done a good or great job, meeting or exceeding expectations; and it’s how we give people nudges or start a conversation when they haven’t met expectations.
The fact is we all want feedback, from our managers, our community, our peers. We’re ambitious, driven people, and we want to know where the bar set is so we can clear it; we want recognition when we do clear it; and when we miss, we want to know so we can improve. Working in an environment where you’re not getting feedback means knowing there’s a bar there, somewhere, but not being able to see or feel it, and so having any idea whether your jumps are high enough. It’s disorienting and unsettling and unsatisfying.
Here’s a quick, 25-minute guide (PDF, epub) to giving feedback. By the time you’re done reading it, you’ll know what effective feedback looks like, how to deliver it, and how to make it a regular part of your management practice.
Here are some of my current favourite resources for managers starting to give feedback:
You can also watch my 10-minute talk, Help, I’m a Research Software Manager!, which talks about how we in research already have the advanced skills to become great managers - we just need the basics to become good managers, first.
Finally, you can always email me or even arrange a quick free call. It is very important to me to support those who have stepped up or are considering steping up to the responsibility of managing teams.