How Much Positive Feedback is Too Much?


[aa_subtitle_display]While we’ve posted a lot about the benefits and importance of giving employees feedback at work, we haven’t yet broached the topic about giving too much positive reinforcement.

You’re probably thinking that giving too much isn’t even possible, but research shows that there may need to be a stopping point when it comes to this recognition and encouragement. Keep reading to gain a better understanding of the ideal balance to maintain on this sensitive matter at your organization when dealing with employees.

Deciphering How Much Positive Feedback is Too Much

When it becomes hard to give candid and harsh feedback

It’s great to give positive feedback, but when you’re too far on the spectrum of positivity, it can become more difficult to give candid and constructive criticism to those around you. When that becomes the case and you find yourself providing employees with primarily positive feedback, it may be time to dial it back a bit.

When egos become inflated

When you’re providing employees with ample praise, it’s possible that they could get big heads. These big egos are bound to get in the way when working through conflicts, solving problems, and they can even affect the quality and efficiency of work put out on a daily basis.

While your goal should be to make employees feel recognized and supported, you don’t want to do so to such a point where they have inflated egos and feel like they can do no wrong.

When you’re skirting issues

As we mentioned above, focusing primarily on positive feedback can make it tough to give the harsh feedback that sometimes needs to be said.

Along the same vein, an overwhelming focus on the good can lead to issues being ignored or it can make it tougher to address them with employees directly. You never want to let problems linger at your organization, so this is something that is a definite watch out for.

When expectations have become unrealistic

Constantly pumping up employees for their work and telling them how great they are can result in unrealistic expectations around the office. No one always does everything perfectly, and a heavy focus on encouragement can lead to employees feeling as though mistakes are unacceptable and need to be hidden in the workplace.

Your goal should be to cultivate an environment where mistakes are okay, as long as making them and recognizing them helps employees to grow, learn, and evolve afterwards. These unrealistic expectations set employees up for disappointment and a long road ahead, so managers must do what they can to provide a better balance and negate the chances of these occurring.

How a PEO Can Help

Maintaining a healthy and effective balance of critical and positive feedback is a delicate line, and PEOs understand that fact. Enlist in the help of a PEO that can guide you towards providing your employees with the exact mix of feedback that they need to feel both encouraged and motivated to do their best on a day to day basis.

Call us to learn more!