Feedback is a gift “I have some feedback for my boss, but I’m wondering if I should give it.  I’m also wondering how I’d deliver feedback to her so that it’s most effective.” This was my client processing his thoughts as he revealed concerns about some recent messages his leader put forth in front of the team. These are valid concerns and require thought and planning in order to as successful as possible in delivering the message and maintaining a good relationship.

Should I give feedback?

If there is something bothering you, I always think transparency is a good thing.   The issue will continue to fester and build up, if we don’t get it off your chest.  This can be dangerous in the long run.

So when should you give feedback?  Here are some potential situations:

  • When someone has crossed a boundary for you.
  • They are not aligning to the values of the organization.
  • You want to be supportive of their success, but they are communicating inappropriately.
  • They are unaware of the effects of their behavior.
  • Someone mis-speaks in a meeting because they are unaware of previously set expectations.
  • Inappropriate language is used in the workplace.


Here are some situations where feedback may not be appropriate:

  • You disagree with someone’s style, even though they’ve successfully completed the task.
  • The perceived violation is petty and of little importance.


How should I give feedback?

Following the guidelines of Crucial Conversations, one should consider ‘how’ very carefully.  This is an important relationship and you want to make sure you don’t do any damage.

  • Ask if they are willing to accept some feedback in this area.
  • State what your intention is and is not. (I’m not trying to ……., what I am trying to do is……)
  • State the facts and ask if you’ve missed anything.
  • Thank them for accepting the feedback.
  • Ask if they have any feedback for you.

In this article, you can find additional reasons to give and accept feedback as a leader: 4 Reasons True Leaders Need The Gift of Feedback

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