There’s room for improvement for even the best companies and getting employee feedback from your team is one of the most effective ways to see how and where you can grow.
Not all feedback, however, is of equal value. Managers who seek improvement want honest information on the workplace experience of their employees. Though it may be tough to hear unfiltered feedback, it’s the quickest and best way to deeply understand how engaged employees are, gain insight into their strengths and weaknesses, and to learn the areas where improvement is needed.
Yet, in virtually all companies there’s limited access to unfiltered employee feedback from the lower levels of the organization. Layers of management separate executives from understanding the true workplace experience that’s being provided to employees.
Gaining unfiltered employee feedback is critical to understanding the issues your teams are struggling with and the ideas from the front line on how to address them. When managers can swallow their pride and profoundly listen to employees, everyone benefits. The question is, how might they go about acquiring this vital information?
Let’s go over several ways to get unfiltered feedback from employees so you can begin to gain an honest perspective of your company’s workplace experience.
1. Keep Employee Feedback Anonymous
To get the real perspective from employees, you must keep feedback anonymous. Make sure everyone knows that when they give feedback, their thoughts, feelings, complaints, and suggestions will not be attributed to them.
It’s essential that people know their thoughts are anonymous and their identities will be protected. If you fail to communicate this or put it into action, you can forget about gathering honest, no holds barred feedback. When employees believe there may be consequences for submitting negativity, they’ll likely bottle things up or be dishonest and tell you what you wish to hear.
One of the best ways to get anonymous employee feedback is to work with an external service provider like Olumo to gather it for you. At Olumo, we can eliminate the roadblocks to progress within your business by providing daily live access to every employee’s feedback. Once you know, you can grow.
2. Create a Safe Environment
Don’t expect employees to simply open up. Do you wonder why employees don’t come to you with concerns? Put yourself in their shoes. Employees likely worry that if they share their true thoughts, their jobs may be on the line. Frankly, they may have a logical fear of negative consequences if their unfiltered feedback isn’t flattering.
It’s therefore up to you to create a safe and encouraging environment where honesty is valued – not feared.
Listen to employees who question company policies, systems, and procedures. Believe it or not, the people who challenge you are the ones who’ll generate positive change in the company. Allow employees to share ideas weekly, either through one-on-one meetings with supervisors, group meetings, or through an online submission system. Some of these ideas might just transform your company!
3. Build an Open Workplace Culture
Workplace culture starts at the top. Employees will be more likely to be open, honest, and forthcoming if you showcase these qualities yourself and encourage them in others.
Walk the walk. Demonstrate these values in your day to day interactions with all company employees, including both those higher and lower in the workplace hierarchy.
Don’t shy away from admitting your own flaws, vulnerabilities, and true workplace experience. You have room to improve too, and by showcasing these characteristics on a daily basis, you’ll function as a role model for those around you.
If employees respond in kind, encourage them! It can be hard to hear when you receive
negative feedback regarding the company, but don’t shy away from it. Rather, accept the unfiltered feedback with open arms and respect. Fair criticism is exactly what’s needed to learn and grow together.
4. Form Social Bonds Outside the Office
One great way to build this form of trust is to encourage appropriate out of office socialization. Are employees ever treated to lunch or coffee every few months?
If you’re really invested, consider taking everyone on a paid work day out of the office for a fun team-building outing. Also remember the following:
- Use enjoyable experiences to grow deeper bonds and get to know employees outside of the office.
- Build trust naturally and without pressure.
- Don’t force connections with your employees – let them grow organically.
- Keep relationships professional and respect the boundaries of your employees.
Develop stronger relationships with team members and you’ll likely find employees will respond with increasing openness as they get to know their superiors and vice versa. With this trust in hand, greater employee honesty will be a prized result.
What Unfiltered Feedback Can Do for Your Company
Managers of all levels want to know how engaged their employees are. Do you understand their strengths and weaknesses? Are you making improvements with their help for better company success?
The best of the bunch know that unfiltered employee feedback is a precious resource. Great leaders are always on the lookout for ways to encourage truthful expression from employees at all levels.
If you gather honest employee feedback on the workplace experience at your company, listen to it with an open mind, implement changes to address concerns that have been expressed, and you may benefit from:
- Increased employee retention
- Greater employee engagement
- A plethora of new ideas and perspectives
- An improved workplace culture
Get Unfiltered Feedback Today
At Olumo, we offer a simple platform that employees can use to give wholly anonymous feedback. The identities of respondents are protected and not revealed, thus creating a safe space for true voices to be heard.
With our employee surveys and polls, you can gain valuable information on your employee’s experiences as well as find the answers to your most important questions in a comfortable and safe fashion. You can even provide free response questions where employees can share their deepest thoughts without fear of judgment or consequences.
Ready to obtain a perfect baseline of the workplace experience and what to do about it? Use the power of millions of daily data points to gain deep insights into how you’re doing. Request a Demo to see a survey in action, or text us 24/7/365 at 385.213.1030. Don’t just imagine the insight you could learn – take action today!