Use fewer words.

Be as specific as possible. Vague or cliched phrases (“You need to work on your executive presence”) or sugarcoated feedback is confusing for the listener, increasing the likelihood that they will miss your point entirely. “if you use 100 words to say someone missed a deadline, you are overexplaining,” says Porter. And once you load up on filler words & softeners (“I know your overworked”), the feedback begins to feel personal & bias can creep in, says Billimoria. Instead, get to the point & mention what you observed. Say, “I noticed we missed the deadline for the last tow reports. What happened?”

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