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Don’t forget your top performers. They need feedback too!

I recently had coffee with a senior leader from a large organization, and he mentioned that he had a new boss and how his new boss was so different from his previous boss, whom he had worked under for more than 10 years. He commented that last month he had received his first performance review in 10 years, and it was quite refreshing.

 

Given my curious nature, I asked what made it so refreshing, as that is not typically an adjective that I hear when it comes to performance reviews. He responded that the review was overall very good, and that what stuck out was the feedback on his performance that he received during the conversation. His new boss was very specific in what he was doing well, and sited several examples that he had observed over the prior year; and he also identified a couple of areas that, in his opinion, would help this senior leader be more effective. He was again specific on those recommendations, and offered continued support.

 

My client’s response to his annual review and feedback was what resonated with me. He commented that for 10 years he had gotten used to being left alone and only heard from his previous boss when there was a numbers issue. No feedback, no reviews, and no calls unless something was wrong. He said that he had gotten used to no feedback, and had learned to make up his own feedback! What surprised him was two things: 1) he didn’t realize how much he missed getting specific feedback; and 2) he thought he didn’t need feedback, when in reality he valued feedback far more than he ever thought.

 

So here’s the takeaway. Never underestimate the positive effects of feedback and how important it is even for your high performers. As leaders, it’s not uncommon to neglect our high performers because we get busy with other issues and rationalize to ourselves that they don’t need feedback and coaching because they’re doing so well.

 

If you haven’t given feedback to one of your strong performers lately, you know that one who is doing their job and is doing it well…then, reach out now and share some feedback. They just might find your conversation (and feedback) refreshing!

 

If you have any comments, we’d love to hear from you. Visit our website and post your comments. I will respond to any posted comments! Thanks.

Tom Athenour

<p>Tom Athenour is the co-founder, and CEO of StarQuest Group, a leadership and sales consulting group based in Colorado. StarQuest offers executive coaching, leadership development programs, and sales training. Tom’s mission is simple: to help people achieve positive, lasting change for themselves, their teams, their organizations, and even their families.</p> <p>For the past 25 years, Tom has been helping individuals and organizations maximize their potential by helping them develop new skills, apply new processes and most importantly overcome their limiting beliefs.<br /> As an executive coach, consultant and educator, Tom has helped leaders and sales professionals in a variety of organizations from start-ups to Fortune 500 global companies. </p> <p>Tom has authored articles and position papers, and has spoken at numerous national conferences about leadership, organizational change, and talent development.</p>

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