Guidelines for Giving Effective Feedback
Activity: Participants discuss difficult feedback they gave or received.
Purpose: Giving feedback is fundamental to effective supervision and effective mentoring.
Participants learn some principles for giving good feedback.
Materials: Handout, “Guidelines for Giving Effective Feedback”
Laptop computer with LCD projector or newsprint and markers
h Time: 30 minutes
Introduce Activity h3
Giving feedback is fundamental to effective supervision and effective mentoring. This activity introduces some principles for
giving good feedback.
Partner Discussion h7
Ask participants to discuss with the person sitting next to them:
What is the most difficult feedback you have received or given in your career?
Group Discussion h 20
Call on individuals to describe the situation:
Who would like to share a situation?
Extract characteristics of good feedback and list them on newsprint or screen.
What do you think made that feedback effective?
Should feedback always be positive?
How does a mentor give effective feedback?
What have you done that you find effective?
Discuss the difference between “feedback on the fly” (e.g., unplanned, in the course of normal work) versus feedback
as part of performance review or other “time out.”
Note the difference between feedback on technical competence versus feedback on personal and social competence.
Distribute handout (“Guidelines for Giving Effective Feedback”).
Add guidelines from discussion above.
Note forms for assessing apprentices’ performance in Learning Well at Work, pp. 35–36.
Cornell Youth and Work Program
PREPARING YOUTH FOR THE FUTURE
Mentoring Youth at Work:
Role Play Alternative h 20
(We never used this alternative because we thought we had enough role plays.)
Pair off. (Odd mentor with observer or facilitator)
Each person tells the other the most difficult feedback they ever had to give.
Other person then role-plays in front of the group how she or he would give that feedback. First person then role-plays
the way he or she did it.
Participants discuss differences and similarities, strengths and weaknesses of both approaches. Others join in.
Extract characteristics of good feedback from role plays and list on newsprint or screen, as noted above.
Cornell University is an equal opportunity, affirmative action educator and employer.
Produced by Media and Technology Services at Cornell University.