4 Employee Feedback Examples (Plus How and When to Use Them)

Here’s your guide to the main types of employee feedback – and the right time to use each one.

June 15, 2022
Press the button to generate random icebreaker questions.
There are 300 more icebreaker questions at the bottom of the article
How would you describe your job to a five year old?
What season would you be?
What is a weird food you have tried? Would you eat it again?
What is your favorite holiday tradition?
Would you go in the mother-ship with aliens if they landed on Earth tomorrow?
What is your favorite season?
Do prefer working from home or the office?
What is your earliest memory of this job?
What is the best thing you have bought so far this year?
What is the earliest book you remember?
If you had to move to another country, which one would you choose?
You are the best criminal mastermind in the world. What crime would you commit if you knew you would get away with it?
What is your favorite movie genre to watch?
What was the last thing you ate?
What person from history would you add to Mount Rushmore?
What is a weird fact you know?
What is your favorite part of working from home?
Were the Spice Girls a good team?
Imagine you can instantly learn any language. Which would you choose?
If you could live in any state, which state would you pick?
Which fictional team is the best team of all time?
What did you want to be when you grew up?
What do you usually eat for a quick lunch?
What simple food will you never eat?
Show us the weirdest thing you have in the room with you right now.
Would you rather stay at a hotel or an AirBNB?
What is your favorite movie genre to watch?
Are you more productive in the morning or at night?
Who is someone in your community that makes a difference?
Who was your most unique pet?
Choose one famous person from history you want on your team during a zombie apocalypse.
What is a good way to give back to the community?
Which song could you listen to over and over again?
Is Hugh Grant funny?
What is your favorite thing to eat for breakfast?
Would you want to have an imaginary friend today? Did you have one as a child?
What actor or actress would you want to play you in the movie about your life?
What is the best super power?
What is your New Years resolution?
You can only eat one food again for the rest of your life. What is it?
What is the best work holiday?
What is the first gift you remember receiving?
Would you rather join Metallica or Backstreet Boys?
What is the best example of a community you have seen?
What is an easy way to do something nice for someone?
Show us your phone background and tell the story behind why you picked this image.
What was your first job?
Pick any band to play at your funeral.
If you could have an unlimited supply of one thing for the rest of your life, what would you pick?
Which superpower would you give to your arch enemy?
What is the most obscure superpower you would want?
What emoji best describes how you are feeling right now?
If you could live in any country, which country would you pick?
Would you rather live in a city or a town?
What is your favorite holiday?
What is something you accomplished as part of a team?
What is your standard office lunch?
What is your most used phone app?
What is your favorite season?
Have you ever won something as a team?
Imagine you are a professional baseball player. What is your introduction song?
Beach holiday or ski trip?
Have you ever been to a funny comedy show?
Would you rather live at the North Pole or the South Pole?
What is your favorite song to sing?
If you could live in any state, which state would you pick?
Imagine you could teleport anywhere. Where would you go right now?
What is the most unusual job you have heard of?
What was the last thing you ate?
You can visit any fictional time or place. Which would you pick?
What do your family and friends think you do all day?
What movie do you wish you could watch again for the first time?
Show us your most-used emoji.
What was the most unique style or fashion trend you ever embraced?
What movie defined your generation?
You are stranded on a remote desert island. Are you alone or with your worst enemy?
What is your favorite knock-knock joke?
Have you ever told someone Santa is not real?
Do you know how to speak more than one language?
On a scale of 1 – 10, how much of a team player are you?
What is your #1 recommendation in this city?
What is your favorite holiday?
What bucket list item do you most want to check off in the next six months?
What is your favorite mythical creature?
What was the first way you made money?
If you could be great at any Olympic sport, which would it be?
Which song could you listen to over and over again?
When did you start liking/hating mushrooms?
Where is your favorite vacation spot?
Do you take your PTO all at one time, or another way?
Which show do you remember most from your childhood?
Which beverage goes best with pizza?
Would you want to have a personal assistant follow you around everywhere and do what you asked of them?
Have you ever met your idol?
What did you want to be when you grew up?
Would you rather live 100 years in the past or 100 years in the future?
What is your hobby?
When you are alone in the car, what volume is the music at?
Imagine you no longer have to work. How would you spend a Tuesday?
What is your favorite type of sandwich?

Employees crave helpful feedback.

Research even suggests that people want corrective feedback even more than praise if it’s provided in a constructive manner. And the same study revealed that 72% of people said their performance would improve if their managers gave them corrective feedback.

However, giving feedback can be hard. In fact, 69% of managers are often uncomfortable communicating with staff, and 37% are uncomfortable having to give direct feedback about their employees’ performance.

But giving your staff feedback doesn’t have to be awkward. You just have to know which type of feedback to use at which times.

Here’s your guide to the four types of employee feedback – and how and when to use each one.

How do you give professional feedback?

It might seem counterintuitive, but your employees will thank you for bringing up areas they can improve on. However, most managers find it hard to pick their staff up on their flaws. 

Giving feedback doesn’t have to be awkward though, especially if you follow these simple steps:

  • Don’t spring anything on them. When an employee falls short of your expectations, that should be dealt with straight away – not left until their next one-to-one when the criticism might seem out of the blue. 
  • Ground every bit of feedback in an example. Criticism that isn’t founded on something concrete can be interpreted as a matter of opinion by your employee and dismissed. 
  • Focus on themes. Pick out patterns in your employees’ behavior and ask them to brainstorm solutions on how they can change it.
  • Sandwich criticism in praise. Soften the blow of feedback by making sure to praise the employee either side of it. 
  • Give it time to breathe. It’s important to give a teammate time and space to absorb any feedback you give them. The bigger the criticism, the more important this step in the process is. 

Assembly makes it easy to give and receive feedback with customizable and automated workflows. Schedule 15 min to learn more.

What are the different types of employee feedback?

There are four main types of workplace feedback. Here’s the difference between them – and how to give each kind effectively.

Constructive feedback

Constructive feedback is when you flag an area an employee is falling short in and give them concrete and actionable advice on how to improve.

For example, if you’ve noticed a few mistakes starting to creep into an employee’s work, you might flag that with them during a 360 Employee Review, pointing to a few specific examples so they can see exactly what you mean. Then, you can talk through some ideas with them about what they can change to fix the problem going forward.

How to give effective constructive feedback 

Constructive feedback works best when you put the onus on the employee to come up with ways they can improve in the area you’re having to flag with them. Telling them exactly what to do isn’t likely to work anywhere near as well as giving them the chance to work out ways to improve that best suit them. 

And always be sure to end on a positive note. Mention another area they’re doing well in or a recent win they had at work to balance out the criticism and let them know it’s just this one area they could improve in.

Negative feedback

Sometimes employees cross a line and you have to pull them up on their performance in no uncertain terms. They might miss an important deadline, get into the habit of arriving to work late, or always turn up to meetings unprepared.

This is where negative feedback comes in.

How to give effective negative feedback

The best way to handle an issue with an employee is head on – no matter how uncomfortable it might be in the moment. Everyone will be better off if you broach difficult topics with a direct conversation.

When you do have to give negative feedback, remember that everyone wants to feel like they’ve been heard and understood. So, make it your priority to understand how the person you’re having to flag a problem with perceives the issue and get their side of the story.

You might discover the problem you’re having to highlight is a symptom of a wider problem you weren’t even aware of. 

For example, a colleague’s poor work performance might stem from problems in their personal life they didn’t want to burden their teammates with, and the ultimate solution might be some time off or a more flexible working situation.

Approach negative feedback with empathy and your staff are more likely to feel comfortable opening up if the behavior is the tip of an iceberg – not to mention far more likely to take the feedback on board.

Positive feedback and recognition

Positive feedback – when you acknowledge and praise an employee for who they are and what they do for your organization – is one of the most underutilized tools in the people management toolkit.

In fact, 40% of employed Americans say they'd put more energy into their work if they were recognized more often, and 70% of employees say that motivation and morale would improve “massively” if managers simply said “thank you” more.

And yet 65% of employees haven’t received any form of recognition for good work in the last year.

So, be sure you’re getting positive feedback right in your organization.

Recognition has never been easier - Assembly empowers teams everywhere to recognize and celebrate each other. Book a demo to start for FREE today.

How to give effective positive feedback

Not all workplace recognition is created equal. The most meaningful feedback is honest, authentic, tailored to how the employee likes to receive recognition, and comes from their line manager. So, be sure to include prompts for your managers to give their reports praise that ticks all these boxes in your Performance Review Flow.

Upward feedback

Everyone needs feedback to reach their potential at work, and managers are no exception. 

That’s where upward feedback – where managers ask their reports to give them feedback – comes in.

This gives employees at every level of your company the chance to have a say in how they’re managed. And since 57% of employees have left a job because of their manager, this can have a huge impact on your staff engagement and turnover.

How to get effective upward feedback

You can bake upward feedback into your company culture through simple Flows that help your managers get meaningful feedback from their reports (and your employees to give useful feedback to their managers).

The final word

Stick to these simple tips whenever you have to flag an issue with your reports to make sure you’re delivering the kind of helpful feedback they’re bound to appreciate.

Make all four types of feedback a fixture in your organization by baking them into your performance reviews and your one-to-one meeting questions to reap the rewards regular feedback can have on your organization.

Start Assembly for FREE today. Book a demo.

Browse our Free Employee Recognition Guide

Get the foundational knowledge on creating an employee recognition program that boosts employee engagement and helps them feel valued.

Explore Guide
Employee recognition guide