Managers sometimes forget how to get the best out of their people.

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I'm Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter, the head coach for and JobSearchCoachingHQ. com.
Now I want to talk with those of you who are in management roles. I tend to do a No BS Management Advice video once a week, that's designed to help you be more effective as a manager and as a leader. This one is about praise and criticism, which I think a lot of managers forget to do.
I'm not going to say one or the other but, if you think about a lot of reviews that are given, folks invariably are surprised. They're blindsided by some of the things that are said to them. Why do you think that is? Folks, it's you, because you're not really talking to your people and you're not clear with them about what expectations are and how they're doing it.
I remember when I was in Toastmasters, they talked about "the sandwich approach--, you praise someone for the speech they gave, something good about what you saw, you make a suggestion for improvement, and then, from there, the third piece piece of the sandwich was, again, a compliment.
That may not work for you. But I think one thing that does work is, if every once in a while, you bring someone into your office or into your cube, sit him down, just go, "I'm just checking in with you. How do you think you're doing so far? What do you think you're doing well? Where do you think you could use some improvement?" Make them self critique.
If they say, "I don't know. Where do you think I could use some improvement?"
"Nah you go first," and you put it back to them to kind of sort through. You do this on a regular basis, not review time, because then they know that you're up to something, but you do it intermittently. You do it with your entire team of individuals, so that they're getting input from themselves and they're forced to consciously be aware.
Now, if they're way off base, as some people really are, what I want you to think of doing is really very simple. You know, you can say, "I see it a little bit differently. Can I offer a suggestion to you?" Then you bring nothing emotional into the equation. All you deal with arecthe facts of the behavior. Nothing requires an interpretation.
You just say, "I noticed a couple of weeks ago, you were working on something (by the way, never start off your first meeting with something that happened a few weeks ago; always deal with something much more current. Hit's more likely to be top of mind for them, even though you've been carrying around this baggage for a couple of weeks and haven't addressed it. We've got to start with something current. I'm just going to use this one as an example), I noticed a couple of weeks ago, I noticed something yesterday, where you were in a situation where it seemed like (this is where you're acknowledging it seemed like but may not have been) that you were struggling with something. I noticed that/I was wondering, how did you resolve that? Where'd you get some advice or help from?"
"Well I kind of toughed it out?"
"How much time did you spend 'toughing it out' when you could have gone to someone else? Is that your normal manner of doing things because you might have gotten it done and not hold up other people if you'd ask for some advice."
"Who could I have gone to?"
See you're entering into a conversation that's designed to help them improve. . . And that's what the goal is.
Now, you can also say, "I noticed that, at the meeting, you spoke up a lot more. I really liked that. I liked hearing your voice at the meeting because you really have a lot of valuable stuff to say." And notice, what you're doing is noticing something positive. I'm just giving you alternatives about how you can express things. It's factual.
Then, you know, at the end, in the example of the praise, "I like hearing your voice more," giving them encouragement to keep speaking, because they have something to say.
If one meeting you praise someone for doing something, the next week, don't criticize them for doing it, okay? Obviously, they get mixed messages. But the goal here is to give regular feedback and intermittent points. Catch them doing something right.
Ask them to self-critique on a regular basis because that self-critique is going to start building up a muscle of improvement for them. As they move into management roles, it's going to allow them to have a technique for how to work with their team.
I hope you found this helpful. I'm Jeff Altman. If you're interested in my coaching you, connect with me on LinkedIn at Once we're connected, message that you're interested in coaching. We'll set up a time for a free discovery call.
I hope you have a great day and take care


Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter is a coach who worked in recruiting for what seems like one hundred years. He is the head coach for He is the host of “The No BS Coaching Advice Podcast,” and “No BS Job Search Advice.”

No BS Management Advice
No BS Management Advice

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