How to Get Your Team to be Honest with You
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How to Get Your Team to be Honest with You

In a workplace, getting a team to speak out or share their thoughts can be difficult. Some of them have a lingering fear that their ideas or opinions will be rejected. If they comment on a project or a co-worker, they fear retribution from the higher-ups or the co-workers they comment on.

This fear is understandable regardless of your tenure in the company. However, letting this fear can make it hard for teams to collaborate and grow. So, what do you do?

Here are some tips on how you can get your team to be honest with you (and with each other):

Request Or Demand Feedback

Employees don’t immediately give feedback, especially if they are not required. Most even think they will be given negative feedback if asked to provide one. Others will even say they didn’t know it was okay to give feedback.

You can counter this by telling your team that you not only want to hear their feedback, you are expecting it from them. To encourage them, you can say that their feedback will help you grow as a person and let you know if you are close to your goals.

Be Humble Or Show Empathy

Whether you are the team leader or the manager, your employees will fear speaking out to you because of what you can do to them for their responses. In some work environments, employees will not dare to speak out because it will be seen as disrespecting their position.

When you speak to your employees about their feedback or opinions, let them know that you also understand what they are feeling because you also felt this fear when you were in their shoes. Reassure them that you are willing to listen no matter what kind of opinion they may have.

Ask Questions

It can be hard to determine what a person thinks if you do not ask directly or if the setting is tense around them. Asking directly will help you understand why they are reluctant to do things, such as providing feedback or being honest, and know how to change it.

When you speak to your team, when you notice something off, be specific with your questions while relating it to the emotions they may be feeling, then ask them what you can do to support them.

Show The Importance Of Feedback

As mentioned above, you can let your team know what the feedback is for you and that you will do your best to improve. If they are aware of what you plan to do with the feedback, the more likely they will be more than happy to provide it and also receive it.

They say that employees follow their team leader’s actions, and their team leader is their best supporter. If you show your team that you are honest with them and preach what you say, they will be reassured that it is okay to follow your actions. Given their experiences with feedback, it may take time, but with patience and some adjustments to your feedback strategy, your team will follow along.

Are you a team manager trying to get your team to perform their best? Here are some ways to go about doing it right:
6 Steps to Build a High-Performance Team
How to Solve a Disagreement Among Team Members on a Projects
Understanding the Importance of Positive Relationships in the Workplace

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