Do we really need to use sandwich feedback?

If you are working or even a student, you have probably been in a performance review conversation. Your manager is going to point out your weaknesses and areas where you need to improve, but at the beginning of the conversation, your manager will give you positive feedback and point out your positive aspects and strengths. But in the middle of the conversation, he also expressed some of your negative points and weaknesses and said that you could have performed better in some areas. After completing this section, he will again tell you that you are doing a great job and that he is satisfied with you.

BingMag.com Do we really need to use sandwich feedback?

If you are working or even a student, you have probably been in a performance review conversation. Your manager is going to point out your weaknesses and areas where you need to improve, but at the beginning of the conversation, your manager will give you positive feedback and point out your positive aspects and strengths. But in the middle of the conversation, he also expressed some of your negative points and weaknesses and said that you could have performed better in some areas. After completing this section, he will again tell you that you are doing a great job and that he is satisfied with you.

This style of receiving feedback may sound familiar to you. This style is one of the most common and best ways to provide feedback and is known as sandwich feedback. In this way, both receiving and giving feedback can be attractive and comfortable. In this method, you package and present the "bad" part of the conversation and feedback with 2 "good" parts. This will reduce the negative effects of your feedback.

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However, the empty sandwich feedback method That's okay: these feedbacks are confusing and probably not very effective. This presentation method makes the audience not understand the weaknesses and not understand which parts need to be strengthened. On the other hand, since the negative part of the feedback includes only a small part, the audience may feel that this weakness was not so important and his performance was more positive and satisfactory.

BingMag.com Do we really need to use sandwich feedback?

Organizational leaders usually use this feedback method a lot because it is difficult to give negative feedback to employees and they feel uncomfortable when expressing it. But the sandwich feedback method helps them feel more comfortable. Our workforce is diverse and each of them comes from different cultures, generations and backgrounds. Some experts believe that the sandwich feedback method can create friction between different cultures. For example, talking directly about topics is normal in some cultures and may not be so common in others. For example, an American manager might use the sandwich feedback method to talk to a French employee. This can confuse both of them. On the other hand, the manager may think that the employee is not paying enough attention to his words. On the other hand, the employee may feel that he did not receive direct, specific, and meaningful feedback.

On the other hand, some argue that sandwich feedback can be effective in its own time and place. be Others believe that this method is not suitable for all situations. But what almost all groups agree on is that the sandwich feedback method can be a good way to provide negative feedback. This method may also be used and perform better in some industries.

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With all these qualities Does the sandwich feedback method work? Should we use this method in our organization and personal relationships? In this article, we will review all the important things.

What is the sandwich feedback method?

Based on this feedback method, as the name suggests, our own original and negative feedback. We put it in a cover of 2 positive feedbacks. Just like a sandwich with its contents surrounded by 2 slices of bread. Based on this method, to provide feedback, we first express a positive point, then we provide criticism and negative feedback, and finally we end the conversation with a positive feedback.

BingMag.com Do we really need to use sandwich feedback?

3 Steps to Implement Sandwich Feedback

As stated, this method has 3 main components:

Step 1: Encouragement. Your conversation starts with positive feedback. At this stage, the person providing the feedback begins to praise and compliment his audience.

Stage Two: Negative Feedback. It is at this stage that the core nature of the feedback sandwich is created. In the middle of the conversation, the person starts offering constructive points and negative feedback.

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The third stage: Encouragement. Finally, when criticisms and suggestions are presented, it should be encouraged and repeated the positive points. The purpose of doing this is to end the conversation on a positive note.

Advantages and disadvantages of the sandwich feedback method

Just like anything else, this method also has points. It has certain positive and negative effects. In this section, we will examine some of the positive and negative points of the sandwich feedback method.

Strengths of the sandwich feedback method

  • In some situations, it can reduce the effect of negative feedback. Soften. One of the main ones The reasons people use the feedback sandwich method is that it eases the pressure and difficulty of giving negative feedback. As you've probably experienced, talking about your weaknesses and giving negative feedback can be difficult. But presenting it alongside talking about the positives will make it easier. However, remember that this method is most effective when both parties are really engaged in conversation and pay attention to each other's words and know each other's style of speaking and conversation. For example, cultural characteristics of individuals and societies can be influential. In some cultures, people expect things to be explained to them clearly. On the other hand, in some other societies, it is assumed that the audience will understand the content of the conversation and discussion and there is no need to tell them everything very clearly. In the second case, it can be expected that the audience can better understand the content of your feedback speech through the sandwich feedback method. However, cultural differences should be kept in mind when giving sandwich feedback.

BingMag.com Do we really need to use sandwich feedback?

  • Makes giving negative feedback easier. Let's face it, giving negative feedback is hard. There aren't many people who feel comfortable and enthusiastic about giving this kind of feedback. In such a situation, using the sandwich feedback method helps everyone express their points more easily and better. In this way, feedback can be turned into constructive criticism. On the other hand, it also reduces the problems of being difficult and talking about such things, and the presenter will feel more comfortable expressing the issues.
  • This helps to make the meeting or conversation with End on a positive note. Similar to the above, sandwich feedback helps you end the meeting or conversation on a positive note. This strategy ends the conversation with a compliment. Ending the conversation focuses on what the person does well in this particular role or situation, and ends the conversation on a positive note. This will also make the discussion more effective.

Weaknesses of the sandwich feedback method

  • It may cause more confusion.> Have you ever received feedback in this way and felt confused at the end? Needless to say, you're not the only one who feels this way.

As we've mentioned before, the sandwich feedback method can be a bit misleading. This method was invented with the aim of conveying and influencing points without creating a specific pressure or direct expression. If these conversations happen without clear and direct communication, tension may arise. In a survey conducted in 2019, only 26% of employees considered providing feedback in this way to be efficient and useful. This issue can have various reasons, but since the positive and negative points are presented together, it may be a bit misleading and the audience will not understand the main purpose of the feedback.

  • How in the workplace in principle Ask for help?

BingMag.com Do we really need to use sandwich feedback?

Another part comes from not asking for feedback. On the one hand, it is important for organizations to encourage their employees to ask for and receive feedback themselves. If employees want feedback themselves, they are likely to be much more receptive to receiving feedback and their impact will be much greater. When sandwich feedback is used, the audience probably didn't ask for the feedback themselves, and so they probably don't really appreciate it. It is because of the unexpected and unwanted nature of these feedbacks that the provider tries to present them in a sandwich form and a combination of positive and negative points. But when the audience itself asks for feedback, there is no need to make different considerations and only the negative points and criticisms can be conveyed much more clearly.

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  • It is not culturally inclusive. Nowadays, workplaces have become much more global and inclusive than in the past. With the increase of remote working conditions, this variety has become even more. This means that cultural differences are more prevalent than ever before. These differences can naturally lead to friction in work environments. The sandwich feedback method is more effective in very western communication cultures, especially American societies. Since the person receiving the message must somehow decode the message and extract its constructive and critical part, this method may not be suitable for every person and may even cause mistrust.

BingMag.com Do we really need to use sandwich feedback?

  • It may cause anxiety in the person receiving the feedback. Although Using the sandwich feedback method can make it easier for the person giving the feedback to present their points with less stress, but at the same time, it will bring more anxiety and stress to the person receiving it. Your audience can also understand the situation. They understand that you are trying to say something, but you are not saying it directly. Therefore, evaluate each situation on a case-by-case basis. Try to be direct and transparent in giving feedback, this will help reduce anxiety for both the giver and receiver.
  • It can encourage bad listening habits in people. As we know, indirect communication is difficult to listen to. The sandwich feedback method creates bad and wrong listening habits.

At the end of these conversations, the audience may think that everything is on track and going well. If they have such an understanding of the conversation, it will mean that they will not take any action to resolve the criticism raised; Because they have not understood this criticism well. On the other hand, his attention may be focused only on the positive part of the feedback and try to strengthen it more.

Encouraging active listening and understanding the issues raised requires clear, direct and direct communication. It is kind. Pay attention to your communication skills and ways you can improve them.

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