Today, we’re digging into the three reasons why every company needs feedback now than ever before.
In our recent blog about how open-door policies don’t really set the stage for an effective feedback program, we mentioned the new struggles workers are facing as many companies continue in full or hybrid remote-work settings. (TL;DR: Open-door policies are ineffective when the “door” requires a video chat and team members don’t know the best way to access managers while remote.)
Here’s why you need feedback from your workforce right now:
This may seem obvious, but it’s easy to lose track of where employees stand as normalcy returns. Even for employees of companies performing especially well in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, work isn’t the only variable they’re considering.
“People are juggling a lot right now — whether it’s worry over an unemployed spouse, the stress of helping children with online learning needs, or finding safe care solutions for elderly parents,” says Cindy Wincek, Senior Customer Success Manager at WorkHound. “When you’re seeing people in-person, you’re more likely to notice when they’re having a hard time.”
By proactively asking for team member feedback and providing an easy-to-use outlet to collect that information, you’ll be able to keep a finger on the pulse of your team’s overall worries and concerns — and respond to them accordingly.
“It’s so important to do something with the feedback you receive,” Wincek says. “And when it comes to feedback that indicates team members are struggling, the “do something” could just be a one-on-one conversation — but there may also be a need to do something bigger like implementing a flexible scheduling policy that accommodates the needs of your team.”
The COVID-19 pandemic has necessitated the most rapid changes to workflow, employer policies, and general daily routines that we’ve seen in our lifetimes.
The pandemic has created periods of tumult for even the most change-accepting, nimble members of all teams — just imagine how stressful this must be for those who are change-averse.
As you’re deploying new procedures at such a rapid clip, it’s necessary to keep tabs on how they’re actually impacting your team.
“Even with the best-planned policies, it can be tough to predict true impact until you see it in action,” says Wincek. “This was true even prior to the pandemic, and it’s especially true now, as needs emerge so rapidly. By regularly requesting feedback, you’ll help team members feel more invested and engaged as their concerns are being considered and addressed quickly.”
Previous methods used to accomplish hiring and retention goals may not be useful in the current climate.
If you were a pre-pandemic hire, think of your first couple of weeks on the job. Now, imagine that you were unable to have regular meetings with managers and peers, that you didn’t get to head to lunch with your new team members, and that your training was conducted entirely online. Feels pretty lonely, doesn’t it?
Common causes of turnover include misunderstandings regarding job duties, a lack of adequate training, feeling undervalued, and misunderstandings about compensation or benefits — all topics that can typically be addressed and remedied if managers are made aware of issues.
When you take away the ability for workers to connect and build trust with managers who can help them sort through problems or concerns, you may quickly (and potentially permanently) damage trust. At a small scale, this means individual worker turnover. At a large scale, your overarching company culture may take a hit.
“The things that lead to turnover are generally things that can be addressed, and in many industries, turnover happens fast,” says Wincek. “Some of the interpersonal elements of building trust between employers and their workers have been lost, so it’s crucial that companies find other ways to stay in tune with their teams.”
Ready to see how a feedback platform could benefit your team? Our team of experts are ready to chat. Contact us today!