BlogPerformance Management

October 2, 2019

How to Give Manager Feedback: 5 Examples

360 feedback makes the world go round; and that means we should all be giving feedback - even to our managers. Here's 5 examples of manager feedback done right.

For many of us giving good, constructive feedback is a challenge. Even when we nail what we need to say, we still have to worry about how the feedback will be delivered and received by the recipient. And while giving feedback to a colleague might seem difficult enough (you can find some examples on how to do that here), the thought of giving manager feedback might be downright daunting.

While you may be more used to receiving feedback from your manager than providing it, there are many benefits to learning how to give timely feedback. With that in mind, here鈥檚 some reasons why you should be giving your manager feedback and some tips to keep in mind followed by 5 examples of manager feedback you can use to start drafting your own today.

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Why provide feedback for manager?

Your working relationship with your manager is highly indicative of how you feel about your job and the organization as a whole. Like all relationships, an open line of communication is crucial and should be a two-way street. Just as your manager has expectations for you in your role, it is only fair that you have certain expectations as an employee and feedback helps to reinforce what鈥檚 going well and work on what is not. You might be also asked to provide a manager feedback in a official company-wide feedback survey. Think about the justification for giving manager feedback on these terms:

Things are going well with your role as well as your relationship with your manager.

Giving positive feedback in this situation will remind your manager that you appreciate what they do and that you鈥檇 like them to continue doing what works well for you. Positive affirmation can build relationships up and even make sure we are front of mind when new opportunities arise.

Things are not going well with your role or your working relationship with your manager.

Your manager can鈥檛 help fix problems they are unaware of, so bringing issues to their attention is the first step to resolution. Constructive feedback can provide structure to how we improve our relationships, and if the relationship is not salvageable it provides a clear history of our side of the story. If there is anything that causes you problems to work with your manager you should be able to discuss it with your manager, if not face to face then in a feedback survey.

Manager Feedback - why provide manager feedback

What to keep in mind

Like all types of feedback, there are a couple of things you should consider when offering advice to your manager. Thinking through these items will help make sure your feedback is constructive and well received:

  • Remove emotion from the equation
  • Back it up with facts and data
  • Consider how you would respond to the tone
  • Be direct and precise
  • Be open to communication about the feedback
  • Avoid accusatory language
  • Identify a fix, not just a complaint

Manager Feedback - tips for giving feedback

5 examples of manager feedback

Are you still wondering how to give 360 feedback to your boss? These manager feedback examples will help you find the right words for the right situation;

1. If a manager goes the extra mile:

Last week when I asked you for help on the big sales pitch, I was really struggling to keep up with the edits. I should have asked sooner, but I felt that I would have time. I can鈥檛 thank you enough for jumping in with the proofreading and industry research. I think the presentation will really hook them and hopefully we will get the deal. Thanks so much for making it a priority.

Manager Feedback - example 1

2. When a manager is not supporting you as you would like:

I know that the end-of-the-year required reporting is taking up a lot of your time, but I miss our regular check-ins throughout the month. I think that I have made real progress on my coursework and I鈥檓 ready to be considering for projects as soon as this month. I feel that I can even help with reporting tasks with a little bit of guidance, but would like to meet more regularly to discuss the opportunity with you.

Manager Feedback - example 2

3. When a manager has your back:

I really want to thank you for going up to bat for me to get the Johnson account! I know that there are some concerns over my lack of experience with that portion of the market, but I really think I bring myself up to speed quickly and handle the workload. I can assure you that you won鈥檛 be disappointed with my efforts. Thanks again!

Manager Feedback - example 3

4. When an assignment exceeds your capacity:

I have given some more thought to the suggested sales targets presented last quarter and I feel that taking on that volume of work would be detrimental to my performance overall. Currently I am allocated 20-25 hours per week to support existing customers and 10-15 hours per week on new client acquisition and 5-10 hours per week on internal projects. The amount of time required to reach the targets would impact my other projects negatively. I am open to readjusting this work load or adjust the targets.

Manager Feedback - example 4

5. When we don鈥檛 feel we have enough direction to thrive:

I鈥檓 really happy with the frequency of our touch bases and I think they are useful. But I would like to ask for more feedback on my current projects to make sure that I am doing everything asked of me. Currently I have great feedback from the client side, but it seems like the expectations internally are on a moving scale. I think that we can review the overall objectives of the projects together so that we can make more concrete success criteria. If you have any areas that need improvement or can benchmark them to other team member projects, it would be very useful.

Manager Feedback - example 5

It鈥檚 important for all of us to remember that the point of feedback is not to be patronizing or point out flaws; the point is to identify areas for growth and celebrate what鈥檚 working well. When we keep this in mind and give good manager feedback, we improve the work life of everyone around us. Similarly, it can be beneficial to provide feedback to your colleagues in order to improve team performance, especially if it is positive.

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