This really is a cultural issue. Companies that model a consensual decision-making style have no problem gathering employee feedback. Their cultures are transparent and inclusive, not risk-averse.
Here are five ways to encourage employees to offer feedback:
1. Get a direct appeal from a senior leader.
A straightforward, honest and sincere appeal from a senior leader is the best way to approach this issue. And, the senior leader’s blog is an appropriate channel in which to share it.
The blog post should clearly state why the leader requires employee feedback—to guide her decision-making process—and include examples of how feedback changed her thinking in the past. If applicable, ask the leader to acknowledge past mistakes to emphasize the importance of gathering direct, unfiltered employee feedback.
2. Ask for feedback on relevant topics.
The senior leader’s blog post must be relevant to the work people do every day. The senior leader should find out which topics resonate most with the workforce readership. Toby Ward offers an example where a CFO solicited ideas to save money for front-line workers.