It’s a good starting point for a conversation about feedback.  Being curious is a better mindset to take into the conversation than being right or judgmental.

Here’s an example I hear quite often.

Bart is lazy. 

 First, identify the specific behavior you observed and share that with Bart in a factual manner.  "Bart, I noticed that you didn’t take the initiative to help out last week when we got slammed with that huge project.  In fact you sat at your desk, completed your own tasks and then left.  How come you didn't offer to help?

Hmmm, why didn’t Bart help out?


  • No one told Bart this was part of his job.
  • The last Manager didn’t have these expectations.
  • We’ve never been this busy before.
  • Bart is worried about making errors
  • Or he might not care.

 You don't know until you have the conversation.  Give Bart the benefit of the doubt, approach the discussion with a curious mindset, use specific language (ie NO lazy) and ask him why.