by Zenger Folkman

Too many managers avoid giving any kind of feedback, regardless of whether it’s positive or negative. If you work for a boss who doesn’t provide feedback, it’s easy to feel rudderless. It can be especially disorienting if you’re new in the role, new to the company, or a recent graduate new to the workforce. In the absence of specific guidance, is there any way to know what the average boss would want you to work on?

While everyone will have different strengths and weaknesses they need to work on, when we examined our database of performance evaluation information for more than 7,000 individual contributors and 5,000 managers, we noticed a reliable pattern. There were five behaviors that managers most often associated with high performance:

  1. Delivering results. 
  2. Being a trusted collaborator.
  3. Having strong technical/professional expertise.
  4. Translating vision and strategy into meaningful goals.
  5. Marketing their work well.

If you’re a manager, our data dive revealed two additional qualities to focus on: speed and the ability to inspire and motivate others.

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