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Providing feedback to employees can be challenging for functional managers and employees alike. There is an art to discussing a year’s worth of work with an employee, providing observations, and ultimately a formal evaluation when the manager has not directly observed the employee at every stage of that work. The best strategy is for both parties to be fully prepared and open to listening and learning from each other.
Employees and managers should be trained and prepared for the process of collecting and compiling performance data, documenting and discussing it. They must know how to prepare the form, identify the best supporting evidence of performance, present that evidence in a constructive manner, and how to discuss it during the performance meeting. Employees must be clear on the data needed to support their self-ratings, while managers should be clear on the types of data they are seeking, how to ask questions, and how to respectfully and positively present feedback.