This is the 1 Time You Should Give Negative Feedback at Work — And The 1 Time You Shouldn’t

Giving feedback to the person who signs your paycheck can be scary. A good boss will be open and receptive to your suggestions, but an inexperienced or less-than-par boss may become defensive or upset. 

Whether you have a good boss or a bad boss, you should be able to openly and honestly communicate your feedback. Here are a few tips to help the conversation go well. 

1 time you should give negative feedback at work

Essentially, you should only deliver negative feedback when the other person is ready and willing to hear it. 

How can you gauge this? It starts with your relationship with the recipient — are you generally on good terms? Are they amenable to constructive criticism? 

Think about what you're saying, too. Can the individual actually take strides to correct their behavior? Or are you just saying it to critique them or even make them feel shameful? 

1 time you shouldn't give negative feedback at work

If the recipient is not willing to accept it, then you absolutely shouldn't deliver the feedback. Perhaps it's simply not the right time or place. 

They may not be in a good spot at the moment, and you might not be, either. If that's the case, wait it out — choose a time and place that's more appropriate, or just let it go. 

While it is never easy to give someone constructive feedback, it is especially tough when that person is your boss. Never let that stop you, though. Not only will giving feedback make you feel better about a sticky situation, it is your responsibility as an employee. 

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