Is There Such A Thing As Providing Too Much Positive Feedback?

You’ll never hear us advise a call centre manager to refrain from providing positive feedback to his/her phone agents. At SIClytics, we’re strong believers in promoting energetic working environments where morale is kept high. As the vast majority of employers are well aware, a happy staff is a productive staff. So, you can never really do enough to keep the people who work for you in good moods. Or can you?

Is it possible to give too much positive feedback?

According to Charles Rogel on Decision-Wise.com, it’s important to mix it up. Positive feedback is necessary. An employee engagement survey conducted at Rogel’s business found that most managers are poor at providing recognition and this leads to employee disengagement. However, employees do need structure, assistance and forms of feedback that help them know how to improve upon their performances.

“Ideally, to optimize engagement and motivation, managers should provide five compliments for every criticism,” recommends Rogel, “Recognition fails if it is not sincere or relevant. Forcing a compliment for the sake of recognition is transparent and will cause more harm than good. On the other hand, by focusing on seeing the good people do and by providing sincere compliments (even for expected work), you will brighten days and reinforce positive behaviour.”

For feedback to be effective, it must be sincere.

Perhaps, the idea isn’t to limit the amount of positive feedback you give, but to ensure that it is provided only when appropriate. If a “good for you” or a “job well done” is handed out for every little thing your employees do, the recognition won’t mean as much. It trivializes the importance of their work. Furthermore, it gives your office that kindergarten appeal where everyone gets a “sticker” for participating in an activity – not exactly the makings of a successful workforce.

Randy Hain of The Huffington Post agrees that positive reinforcements are necessary, but not at the expense of constructive criticism that can help employees stay on their toes. “Encouragement itself is not a bad thing,” he writes, “But too much encouragement, plus the absence of candid advice, can potentially cripple the job search efforts of the friends we care about and ultimately delay them finding employment.”

Look at praise the way you would look at food or medication.

Sound like a strange request? Well, consider the fact that we all need to eat nutritious foods to live healthfully. And when absolutely necessary, we may require medicine to overcome ailments. Of course, in these cases, too much of anything is bad for you. We can only eat so much. And, of course, no one should take more meds than is prescribed. According Mark Tyrell, on Unk.com, it’s the same with giving praise.

“What strength of dose is required?” he asks, “How often should it be administered? Constantly praising someone to the skies can make them addicted to praise. Addiction to praise can be as destructive in its way as any other addiction. It can make you incapable of doing anything effectively without your ‘fix’.”

At SIClytics, we offer Live Call Monitoring services to help call centre managers learn exactly how much feedback is necessary to give their phone agents. Whether it’s positive reinforcements for strong performances or words of advice to help better their work, feedback is a necessary part of every employer’s job.

For more information about our Live Call Monitoring services, please don’t hesitate to call SIClytics at 1-877-374-6003 or email us at sales@SIClytics.com.