What is Peer Feedback? [2022 Explanation]

October 13, 2021
4 Min Read
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Trish Garcia for Siege Media

Table of Contents:

What is peer feedback?

Peer feedback is peer-to-peer interaction that allows an individual to receive constructive criticism on their work. It can help both the person giving peer feedback and the person receiving feedback learn from each other.

It is a great way for a student to improve their academic abilities, as well as for employees of small businesses or large corporations to continuously improve company productivity.

Why is peer feedback important?

Peer feedback is important because it can make employees feel heard, improve company culture, increase productivity, and open the door for continuous improvement.

Many businesses that fail to implement peer feedback programs in their companies cite reasons such as fear of conflict, peer pressure, or the inability to handle constructive criticism. However the peer feedback process can actually minimize these issues if done in a controlled environment.

How to properly give peer feedback

In order to give effective peer feedback, peer reviewers must be tactful in their delivery of ideas and opinions. The way you communicate the value of negative comments over positive ones will have an impact on how well people accept your peer assessment.

You should also follow up with an open-ended question so the receiver knows when they are supposed to respond. For example, "Do you have any other suggestions?" would be much better than "Okay." because it gives them something more to say after undergoing a peer feedback activity.

The best way to question peer feedback is to ask for peer feedback. When you receive a peer evaluation, be sure that it is constructive feedback and not destructive. Useful feedback focuses on what aspects of work could be improved and not necessarily what can be removed from its entirety; peer feedback sessions should provide meaningful feedback on other's work instead of just pointing out issues that need to be fixed. It may be helpful to use a peer feedback rubric or template that can offer assessment criteria.

A destructive peer review belittles or humiliates the author of the review; these types of peer reviews do little good and often destroy any positivity there may have been between people who were previously peers.

It is important when in a peer feedback session that efforts are made to try and be as objective as possible, but peer feedback should also focus on the subjective aspect of peer editing - that is, effective feedback should consider how a person who received peer feedback might feel after receiving it.

Why your business should encourage peer feedback

Peer feedback has become a mainstay of modern-day society with its presence being seen everywhere from school essays to academic journals to movie reviews. While peer editing may have originally been used in academia, it is now used regularly in many businesses and makes for an excellent learning process for both peers.

In the workplace, effective peer feedback promotes self-awareness, higher employee engagement, and self-assessment by employees which leads to increased productivity within companies. It is important for workplaces to value individual employee's opinions.

By encouraging peer feedback throughout all levels of a company, businesses can not only promote quality work from employees - but also a more unified front of workers who are willing to work towards peer goals. A business looking to improve their office culture and worker's value should offer a peer review process in order for all employees to be on the same level.

If you found this article helpful at all, then consider supporting Matter by giving it a try today. Matter is a free Slack app where users have the ability to recognize team members with Kudos (praise) and constructive feedback.

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