How to Communicate Criticism and Negative Feedback

You will learn in communication skills training:

  • How to give positive feedback and negative feedback without killing the motivation.
  • How to give praise and criticize without killing off motivation.
  • How to communicate praise, give feedback and increase performance.
  • Why praise and compliments are one of the most underrated and misunderstood motivators.

How to give positive feedback and negative feedback without killing the motivation

Remember the last few times you felt apprehensive while receiving praise. That is because you have been conditioned that after receiving praise criticism will follow.

However, you will discover that receiving sincere genuine praise has a much broader impact than simply feeling good now. People will often behave how you imagine others perceive you and see you.


Everyone has had the experience that if you feel undervalued and the criticism is unfair you will feel unmotivated and probably apply just the minimum effort to get by. Meaning your inclination might be to put in just minimum work, just so you are not criticized again.

When you experience praise it reinforces your values and beliefs, you will begin to grasp and understand the power of praise.

communicate praise

You will learn in communication coaching when you include specifics in your praise of others it makes your compliment appear more sincere and authentic. The more genuine your praise, the more rapport you will build with the other person and higher performance will result.

You can easily see that praise, when used properly, is the most powerful teaching tool and weapon you have at your disposal.

Positive attitude

You are about to discover a highly effective technique to deliver criticism or negative feedback without killing off motivation. As you are probably aware, managers are taught to sandwich a compliment with criticism. The problem you will discover with this technique is when you start out with praise for no expected reason, frequently the person who receives the praise intuitively suspects something else is coming. They imagine the other shoe to drop and what is coming is not going to feel good.

Therefore, when the other person receives negative feedback or constructive criticism, they won’t tend to focus on the positive praise, but their focus will primarily be on the criticism.

If they focus on the criticism, then they disregard the praise or the other side of the sandwich cookie.

The praise that was given at first won’t feel sincere because it will appear as a set up or criticism.

Whether or not that is accurate, it is irrelevant, because that will be the other party’s perception of what they experience.

Recall the last few times we received a compliment from someone, like your boss. How did it make you feel?

Did it spark apprehension that maybe some negative feedback was coming?

praise and criticize without killing off motivation

What will you learn if you attend one of my workshops? I ask participants what is important about receiving praise? I always ask participants you will discover the answer is undeniable sincerity.

When you need to correct someone or criticize them, I recommend you first provide to the negative feedback or criticism, then follow up with the praise. You will discover you will be more persuasive if you add the praise at the end of the conversation and maintain rapport with the individual.

Benefits of communicating specific praise, compliments, and feedback

The benefits of communicating specific praise, compliments, and feedback

You probably already know receiving specific positive feedback and praise results and feeling good. You will realize that learning to be more specific and giving feedback and praise easily be perceived as genuine anthems here. So much more than a general compliment. Discovering that specific feedback as powerful, strengthening your skills of influence and persuasion.

Praise is generally perceived as just good manners but lacks the feeling of depth.

  • Specific feedback is believable and sincere
  • Specific praise reinforces and teaches
  • Specific praise gets shared and passed along

Learning how to motivate through praise, compliments, and positive feedback

A person can easily motivate others by raising expectations using praise and positive feedback, not through criticism. By expressing that you hold the other person up to a higher standard generally to motivate that person to perform at a higher standard.

Despite someone, such as an employee, makes a mistake and even after being corrected and criticized, they will still feel part of the team and a valuable player which is crucial to maintain motivation and for the effective management. The trick is to follow criticism with praise or positive feedback.

You will notice that if praise is given before criticism people will often feel manipulated. If we remind employees or others if you didn’t care or value them or if you were not concerned with how they fit into the organization, you wouldn’t take the time with them about the issue. Further if you thought they were on their way out or just thought they were unsalvageable you would not waste your time, would you?

One thing you will discover is if praise given before criticism people will feel manipulated.

Our next article will explain how you should receive criticism.

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