June 28, 2018
by Jernej P.

Why not hearing feedback in real time hurts your company

June 28, 2018
by Jernej P.

With all eyes on the FIFA World Cup quarter-finals, from a point of view, it got me thinking about teams. Is winning or a losing ever down to one player, or is it a team effort? Is losing down to one person not doing their part – or is winning down to one player’s stellar performance? Do teams really work?

If you’ve ever worked with people in teams or groups (as most of us will have!), you’ll know that often they don’t reach their full potential. J. Richard Hackman, the Edgar Pierce Professor of Social and Organizational Psychology at Harvard University agrees. As a leading expert on teams, he says ‘Research consistently shows that teams underperform, despite all the extra resources they have. That’s because problems with coordination and motivation typically chip away at the benefits of collaboration.’

So why is that? Why do teams seemingly end up getting stuck going around in circles with crossed wires and communication roadblocks?

In the current structure, people are working together but are left feeling isolated, focused on their jobs and their abilities. We as leaders are not spending enough time with the team fostering an environment of continuous two-way feedback. Frustrations can be eased if the whole team knows where they stand.

For some reason, businesses fall back on a very structured and stagnant way of providing feedback to individuals and teams. A process that doesn’t seem to have been updated for at least the last 25 years – most rely on a formal annual review, or if you’re lucky, your business might skip the annual review process and hold less formal 3-month performance reviews.

Company having a meeting

That’s still not resolving the problem though.

If you work in the fast-paced world of a start-up, products and plans can be completely overhauled within a few months and the feedback from three months ago simply wouldn’t be relevant. Let alone if you work in an online or social media industry – entire businesses can be launched and folded in the time it takes to schedule a performance review!

Why is the process so difficult? Is it even the right process at all? We don’t think so.

It’s our firm belief that feedback needs to be happening in real time and on a daily basis. And here’s why.

Why giving critical feedback boosts your performance

As leaders of people, it shouldn’t take much to convince you that giving feedback to your employees (and vice versa) is 100% necessary to achieve a profitable and productive business. Everyone can benefit from feedback – from the mailman to the CEO, no one should be exempt quite simply because we’re all able to keep learning and get better.

As an alternative to team meetings – we’re all familiar with 1 to 1 reviews. A meeting between the manager and the direct report to discuss their progress. Areas they excel and where they need to improve. The one on one is the best way for managers and those who report to them to connect on pressing issues, develop a strong relationship and ensure that employees feel like they’re working toward their goals – at work, and otherwise.

Traditional email vs. modern email real-time messenger
How sharing, receiving and discussing feedback looks in real-time compared to ordinary email.

How can your company process feedback in real-time?   

These types of face to face meetings are time-consuming for both parties, and the result is they happen less and less regularly. Particularly in the face of big deadlines – right when they’re at their most important. So how to make regular real-time feedback happen that’s as effective and straightforward as a face to face meeting?

The ideal is to create a space where all team members can work in a positive environment where feedback can be easily communicated in real time. The environment must allow employees at every level to speak up and easily share feedback to a group of people as easily as they do one on one. The information should be shared, received and discussed in real time, with actionable insights easily noted. And this can only happen if you switch to real-time online communication – for example replacing a stagnant email platform to online messaging.

Real-time messaging saves time spent on meetings.

Making this switch to a real-time messaging platform ensures there’s no risk of messages being missed or not being answered. At the same time, the process can be quick – no meetings need to be scheduled, and feedback can be given and received at a time that’s convenient for everyone.

Good communication is the key for any team – back to FIFA, Croatia is a testament to this. If you’re a strong team, you don’t need a one-star player to succeed. If you’re working well together, communicating about your mistakes and your wins you can push through to be successful – whether on the pitch or in the office. Time will tell how far this will now take Croatia! 

Here at Loop, we’ve turned the communication problem on its head. We’ve taken email, the platform we all use, and we’ve armed it with the intelligence. It’s has the same structure, but it comes alive with messaging. It boosts the ability to speak up and have more microtransactions. Team members can discuss how they feel and give honest feedback in real time.

It’s simple to implement, and you don’t need to sign up for anything new. Continue to use your own email now with the added superpower of messaging. Try out Loop – download the alternative.  

Go to https://www.intheloop.io

Jernej P.
Head Of Growth