What is Feedback in Communication?
The importance of feedback in communication cannot be overemphasized and needs no special elucidation. Feedback helps in measuring the effectiveness of communication and is used for evaluation review and to amend the message in the light of response.
Efficient workers have reliable feedback and they succeed in their effective communication.
Feedback should be a continuous process as the audience and communicators are
neither always the same persons nor interacting in the same situation. The extension agent shall take steps to analyze the responses of the audience, which may be positive, negative, or no response.
Characteristics of Feedback
Effective feedback is directed toward improving work performance and making the worker a more valuable asset. It is not a personal attack. Feedback is directed towards aspects of the job.
Be specific rather than saying things like “you always” or “you never”. Vague criticism causes resentment.
Effective feedback can also be characterized as descriptive rather than evaluative. It tells the receiver what he or she has done objectively, rather than presenting a value judgment.
Effective feedback is information that the receiver can use to improve performance. If it is not something the receiver can correct, it is not worth mentioning.
There are considerations in timing feedback properly. As a rule, the more immediate the feedback, the better. This way the receiver has a better chance of knowing what the sender is talking about and can take corrective action.
The recipient must clearly understand effective feedback. A good way of checking this is to ask the recipient to restate the major points of discussion.
In order, for feedback, to be effective, the receiver must be ready to receive it. When feedback is imposed upon the receiver it is much less effective.
Importance of Feedback in Communication
Feedback is an essential component of communication, as it allows individuals to understand how their message was received and to make adjustments accordingly. We have listed a few points for proving the importance of feedback in communication
Feedback allows individuals to confirm that their message was received and understood correctly, which can help to prevent misunderstandings and miscommunications.
Feedback can provide individuals with insight into how they are perceived by others, which can help them to improve their communication skills and develop greater self-awareness.
When individuals give and receive feedback in an open and honest manner, it can help to build trust in relationships, both personal and professional.
Feedback can help individuals to identify areas for improvement and take steps to develop new skills or behaviours. It can also help them to understand their strengths and to build on them.
Feedback can help individuals to understand the perspectives of others, which can lead to more effective communication and stronger relationships.
Feedback can help individuals to understand their performance and identify areas for improvement, which can lead to increased productivity, better outcomes, and improved job satisfaction.
10 Tips for Improving Feedback
- Be specific and actionable: Provide specific examples and clearly state what the recipient can do to improve.
- Be timely: Provide feedback as soon as possible after the event or behaviour you are commenting on.
- Be balanced: Provide both positive and negative feedback, and make sure the positive feedback outweighs the negative.
- Be honest: Be honest and direct in your feedback, even if it is difficult to deliver.
- Be respectful: Deliver feedback in a way that is respectful and non-threatening, and avoid using criticism or blame.
- Be open to feedback: Encourage open communication and show that you are open to feedback as well.
- Be consistent: Make sure feedback is consistent with organizational values and expectations.
- Be clear on your intent: Provide feedback with the intent to help the person improve and not just point out mistakes.
- Be relevant: Provide feedback that is relevant and directly related to the task or behaviour in question.
- Be focused: Stay focused on the specific behaviour or action, and not on the person themselves.
It is important to keep in mind that feedback should be given and received in a constructive and non-threatening manner and that everyone should be open to receiving and giving feedback.