6 Simple Tips to give feedback to a mentee without causing conflict
Reading time: 4 min.
1. Prepare yourself

1.1 A good approach is to discuss the format for providing feedback before starting the mentorship program (during the interview or kick-off session), among other important issues. In order for mentorship to help achieve the goals of the mentee, one-way feedback is not enough - feedback should be mutual. At the beginning of the journey, we discuss how often, in what format feedback will be provided, internal rules for feedback, etc.

1.2 A fresh mind and warmth in the heart are important attributes of feedback. If you feel that today is a difficult day for you and that you are in a bad mood, do not give feedback today, postpone it for another day. Create a culture in which feedback is a joyful event that helps both sides become better.

2. Choose the right time and place

2.1 It is important that you are alone with your mentee during the feedback session. No one should be there except you and your mentee, no one should make noise or distract. 100% confidentiality is an important condition both for giving feedback and for mentoring in general.

2.2 Good health and good mood. Feedback assumes honesty, but the tone in which you give your honest feedback, your gaze, and other nonverbal cues can make a significant difference in how the mentee is perceived. Please remember: it's often not What you say, but How you say it that matters.

2.3 In addition to feedback sessions, use quick feedback. This feedback is given as soon as possible after a specific action by the mentee.

3. Use the sandwich method

3.1 The sandwich method allows you to balance the impact of negative feedback and positive feedback at the moment. Please remember that the content and tone of feedback, both positive and negative, is is the basis. In both cases it is important to be honest, respectful, caring and friendly.

3.2 Please do not interfere with perception: sometimes even a good feedback given in an indifferent or rude tone can cause great harm, and a negative feedback delivered with love and warmth can give a mentee the necessary support and a dose of self-confidence.

4. Be specific and actionable

4.1 Clear and specific actions are the result of proper feedback. It doesn't matter how often or how much feedback you give - what matters is whether it leads to real action and change.

4.2 Be as specific as possible. Don't give feedback in general terms or phrases that can be interpreted differently.

4.3 Good results are obtained by quick feedback on a specific action - at the moment/as soon as possible after the action has been performed. In this case, timing plays a big role: it is important that there is no time delay between action and feedback.

5. Listen and encourage dialogue

5.1 Mentoring is not about domination, but about partnership. Partners united by a common goal use the opportunities available to them to achieve it.

5.2 Mutual feedback is the key to strong relationships and the foundation for achieving goals.

5.3 Be truly grateful for any feedback you receive - it helps you become better.

5.4 Listen carefully to your mentee; it often happens that he pronounces the optimal solution (without noticing it), your task is to help him notice this. In such moments, positive feedback works well.

6. Follow up and monitor progress

6.1 Monitoring is a continuous process and its role is truly important. The fact is that in order for a good habit to take hold in regular actions, and a bad one to go away, the mentor should sincerely carefully monitor the first shoots of both. Often the mentee himself may not notice/realize what he is doing, so it is important to help him with this.

6.2 With warmth, love and care encourage the first shoots of good habits.

6.3 With warmth, love and care confidently uproot the first shoots of bad habits.

Key points

1. Feedback in mentorship matters; the ability to give feedback correctly is developed through many years of theory and practice.

2. Feedback in mentorship is mutual; mutual feedback is one of the keys to a strong mentor-mentee relationship.

3. Feedback in mentorship is about honesty, respect and openness. It is important to take feedback with joy and gratitude - it allows you to get better.

4. Feedback in mentorship is about the right time, place and mood. Often what matters is not what you say, but how and under what conditions you say it.

5. Please give feedback about behavior, actions, but not about the personality of the mentee himself.

Good luck!
Methodologist of Guidbase
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