As a manager you need honest feedback to help you grow and improve. However, it can be tricky to get the candid feedback you really need from your team. After all, who wants to tell their boss they find their 1 to 1s demotivating or their team meetings a waste of time!
One way to get the feedback you need is to make it safe for your team to be honest. Demonstrate that you want to know what they think, even when they might hesitate to tell you. You can do this by explaining that you are working on improving a specific skill or behaviour and ask them for their honest feedback.
For example, you might say something along the lines of the following: ‘I am working on improving how I lead my meetings. I worry that sometimes they go on too long and don’t achieve a great deal. How do you experience them?’ Tell them that that you want both positive and negative comments and ask for specific details if they are vague. However, it’s vital that you resist the urge to respond to what they say, even if you disagree. Simply listen and reflect. Lastly, thank them for their honesty and use their feedback to make necessary changes. By doing this you will demonstrate that you value the feedback you are given. As a consequence you will receive more feedback in the future.