How to Deliver Negative Feedback in Writing
Delivering negative feedback is best done in person. But as more companies extend work-from-home policies, managers and workplace peers must leverage other approaches to communicate difficult feedback—including in writing. According to a 2019 white paper by Zenger Folkman, a leadership development agency, 94% of respondents said that receiving negative feedback helped their work performance when it was well presented. However delivering critical [feedback] __ requires a deliberate and delicate approach:
1. Aim for an empathetic tone
When giving negative feedback, make sure your tone is empathetic. Sending a message from care and support will gain the recipient’s cooperation towards achieving common goals.
Grammarly’s Tone Detector can help by identifying dominant tones in writing so you know how to convey them properly (input).
Grammarly’s tone detector can help with delivering negative feedback. It helps you know your message comes off as intended and that it is empathetic.
2. Cite specific examples
The following are some tips on how to bring up a concern. First, avoid cluttering your message with ten half-remembered anecdotes of how someone performed poorly. Instead, narrow the feedback down to one or two examples that led you to this correspondence. Second, when sharing an example keep it clear and concise as well as factual rather than vague and overgeneralized such as “they chronically do A” instead of saying they were late for deadlines three times now in the past month which is causing them not complete their work by due date
When bringing up a concern try avoiding cluttering messages with 10 half remembered anecdotes about why people perform poorly at something like showing empathy towards others who might struggle more than most individuals so don’t write
By being late with their reports, the team frequently falls behind on delivering what they promised to the client. This affects not only our timeline but also how we are viewed by them because it is affecting other company’s needs as well.
3. Provide guidance
There is a better way to give feedback! The “compliment sandwich” (where you offer two compliments and then the criticism) can be ineffective. Instead, focus on empathy; provide specific examples of where they went wrong; and finally share your input with them about how they could do things differently in the future or something that would help improve their performance for next time.
Instead of giving someone feedback in the form of a compliment sandwich, try to model empathy by providing specific examples and then offering suggestions on how they can improve.
4. Invite a response
When delivering feedback, it is as important to give the recipient time and space as it is for you. Their response might include:
- More information that provides context surrounding their behavior.
- Clarification about a point you misinterpreted or overlooked; they may also share negative feelings while reading your input on them!
- Buy in on next steps suggested by yourself (or even new ideas!).
When you receive feedback, the best thing to do is ask questions. Ask clarifying questions so that you can understand what’s being said and why they think it might be an issue for your organization or team members. When people are given a chance to converse about their thoughts on something difficult, everyone will have a better understanding of each other’s perspectives which in turn makes them more empathetic towards one another when trying to resolve problems collaboratively