Readtime: 7 minutes

TIME FOR „Respectful Communication"

Active feedback culture - why it is so important and how it works.

Aug 1, 2022 1:09:03 PM

"Honey, we need to talk." Anyone who hears this sentence is often - without suspecting it - dangerously high up on the verbal escalation stage. And this kind of conflict talk does not only cause tears to flow or marriages to crumble. In the job, too, there is a lot of explosive power in what is said or not said, heard and overheard. You can find out here why a good communication strategy is indispensable, how the All for One Group lives an active feedback culture and which simple feedback rules should be observed.

I remember a situation during my training. I made a stupid mistake (maybe I hadn't listened well, I blocked that part out). My boss at the time confronted me. Very loudly. Very condescending. In front of all the staff. Many months later, I graduated top of my year and was offered the chance to stay. I left. Such situations are daily business in the working world. According to a study by the Gallup Institute, only 16 percent of all employees in Germany have a high emotional attachment to their employer. 68 percent have a low emotional bond, 16 percent no emotional bond at all. What is the reason for this? Put simply, it's also due to people, like my ex-boss, who don't understand one of the most important management tools: active feedback culture.


Every company lives a feedback culture in its own way. The All for One Group attaches great importance to an open exchange and acts according to the principle: listen, understand, solve. This includes a wide variety of aspects:

Allow and respect the opinion of others
• Listen actively and let people finish
• Do not judge
• Meet everyone at eye level
• Enter into dialogue courageously and proactively
• Acting in a solution-oriented way and putting words into action

Listening is silver, talking is gold, acting is priceless

That's a lot of wood. The All for One Group does a lot to chop it into small portions and put it into practice. Feedback is systematically integrated into staff appraisals. Managers receive targeted training. Since I have been at All for One, I have attended various workshops and training sessions on communication and feedback. This provides methodical tools for communicating in a more targeted way. What I particularly liked: The strong practical relevance. Communication training is simulated on the basis of real cases. Feedback and advice comes not only from the coach, but above all from one's own colleagues.

Workshops and trainings are only one component. One aspect is also to be aware of the topic of feedback and communication over and over again, and to take a positive approach to it.

Do good and talk about it

For each of our seven values we select one or more value champions. How does this work? Anyone can nominate colleagues who exemplify one of our values particularly well - such as respectful communication. A specially established embassy reviews and evaluates the nominations.

In addition, respectful communication is currently the talk of the town with its own Values Month. The Group's internal communication channels are full of open question and discussion rounds, links to interesting keynotes, tipps, tricks, constructive criticism and praise about feedback and communication.


„Proper praise is intelligent applause."
Kai | Managing Director

"Feedback is basically the anglicised term for what used to be called  praise and blame. While the first is unfortunately omitted too often, the axe is often used  when reprimanding."
Jörgen | Group Process Management

„Giving proper feedback for me is aswell: goal-oriented, timely, open, honest and above all direct (not "backwards")"
Roland | Marketing Manager

„More questions, questions, questions - instead of giving quick answers (really hard :))“
Savina | New Work Officer

„At some points ake a full stop and a comma in the monologue so the monologue can turn into a dialogue“
Serkar | Support Consultant

THE BE-all and end-all: create Feedback rules

The discussion posts clearly show how complex the topic of feedback culture is and how quickly things can be implemented. After Kai's post on the topic of weekly praise, there was a hail of ... praise. Nevertheless, communication and feedback culture should always be approached strategically and in the long term. Otherwise, communication threatens to turn into actionism, which quickly fizzles out. Creating rules is the be-all and end-all for a healthy feedback culture.

the 5 most important rules for Feedback givers

1. be factual
2. say goodbye to moralism
3. give positive feedback
4. use an appropriate framework for feedback (unobjective, loud and in front of all employees is out)
5. don´t just give feedback, accept it yourself

the 5 most important rules for Feedback takers

1. be open-minded
2. put yourself in the other person´s shoes
3. let the feedback sink in
4. learn from feedback
5. set boundaries for feedback

What to do when communication gets stuck?

A clever person once said: thought does not always mean said, said does not always mean heard correctly, heard does not always mean understood correctly, understood does not always mean agreed, agreed does not always mean applied, applied does not always mean retained. This observation makes it clear how many pitfalls lurk.

And of course, communication in a group of companies with over 2.700 employees does not always run smoothly. Even the best communication plans do not provide 100% protection against the potential for conflict and the wrong way of dealing with each other. That is why it is indispensable to reflect on oneself again and again as an employee and as a company. In an internal sounding, the All for One Group surveyed the mood regarding the active feedback culture. Despite good values, the desire for even more active feedback culture was clearly recognisable. It is therefore a good thing that the All for One Group is not a fan of remaining in the status quo, accepting stagnation or resting on old successes. And so the value month "Respectful Communication" is also to be understood as a starting signal for change, at the end of which there will ideally be less "we have to talk" and more "we want to talk and thus make a difference".


P. S.: Here they are - our values:










learn more about our values

What is behind each of the seven values? Find out here >


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