One aspect of a job performance evaluation that often makes employees uneasy is receiving advice or comments from their supervisor about improving their performance.
However, a novel approach gaining popularity in certain workplaces provides a new perspective on this intimidating scenario, known as “Feedforward.”
Why Is ‘Feedforward’ Trending?
The trendy term gives a name to a familiar concept that can help workers and their managers paint the picture of what a successful future state looks like.
“The concept has existed for years,” Karen Leal, a performance specialist. And actually, she added, “Some managers may already be offering feedforward without realizing it.”
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How Will Feedforward Help?
“Unlike feedback, which is retrospective, feedforward offers constructive, forward-facing solutions so employees can grow,” said Leal.
The approach of providing feedforward is both fair and genuine, striking a middle ground between being excessively critical of employees and overlooking chances for improvement.
Leal explained, “To illustrate, when a manager offers feedforward, they might provide recommendations on how to approach future projects differently, rather than dwelling on the employee’s past mistakes.”
Feedforward V/S Feedback
According to Leal, feedback is centered on the past and present, involving employees receiving advice on their past successes and areas for improvement.
Although feedback can be beneficial, it may lead employees to become defensive if they perceive it as criticism or constant scrutiny of their past performance.
Conversely, feedforward has a future-oriented approach, deliberately avoiding retrospection. It acknowledges that employees cannot alter the past and instead places emphasis on enhancing their skills to achieve greater success in the future.
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