Peer Feedback In Workplace: Definition | Types | Importance

by Kylee Stone Jan 9,2023

The People Strategy Leaders Podcast

with Srikant Chellappa, CEO

Peer feedback in the workplace is an effective method for growth and development that, when implemented properly, can benefit both individual employees and the company overall. While the idea of providing and receiving feedback from coworkers may seem daunting or uncomfortable to some, research has consistently shown that peer feedback fosters improved communication, cultivates interpersonal skills, and drives better performance when incorporated into an organization’s culture regularly.

Done right, peer feedback leads to a more collaborative and supportive work environment where employees feel empowered to provide meaningful input to help one another strengthen weaknesses and enhance strengths. In this post, we will explore the definition of peer feedback, identify its different types, and discuss its importance for both employees and employers seeking to nurture an inclusive, learning-oriented culture.

What is Peer Feedback?

Peer feedback refers to the practice of employees providing constructive input and comments on the performance of their colleagues. It involves sharing observations, insights, and suggestions to help individuals improve their work and skills.

Beyond individual development, peer feedback fosters a sense of collective responsibility within a team, encouraging members to actively contribute to the group’s success. By creating an environment where employees feel comfortable providing and receiving feedback, organizations can enhance communication, build trust, and foster a culture of openness and collaboration.

This iterative feedback loop contributes to a dynamic workplace where teams adapt and evolve, ultimately leading to improved productivity and innovation. Additionally, peer feedback serves as a valuable supplement to traditional performance evaluations, offering real-time insights and a more holistic view of employees’ contributions.

Importance of Peer Feedback in the Workplace

The significance of peer feedback lies in its transformative role, fostering continuous improvement, strengthening teamwork, and cultivating a culture of collaborative growth. It helps with the following:


It is quite common for employees to receive feedback from their managers and work towards improving their performance. Peer-to-peer feedback is also similar but better. Receiving feedback from their peers helps employees understand their performance better and helps them create a strong culture of frequent feedback in the team.

This practice allows team members to understand each other’s strengths and weaknesses better and collectively work towards improving the team’s productivity.

Also read: Benefits of 360 feedback for leaders

Different Sources Of Feedback

When you receive feedback from your manager, it is based only on their perspective. A manager’s feedback usually depends on whether or not an employee reaches their set goal for some time. Peer feedback gives you feedback from various sources on various aspects of your work. Moreover, team members know how their peers work better than the managers do. Their solid feedback helps you realize the areas of your performance that specifically require improvement.

Reduces Bias

Employees spend most of their time with their peers and not with their managers, hence there’s more of a chance that peers know their working style and effectiveness when it comes to project reporting and deadlines. Therefore, employees might find more value in the feedback received from peers than that of managers because it is unbiased and fair.

Receiving unbiased feedback motivates employees and makes them feel valued.

Also Read: 5 Performance Management Biases To Avoid

Drives Employee Engagement

Employee engagement is one of the most important aspects of HR. When peers spend time giving and receiving feedback from each other, it helps them build an engaging work culture.  Peer feedback is different from the feedback received from managers because peers are usually comfortable around their peers and it allows them to observe the performance of their own teammates and effectively communicate it to them.

Removes The Fear Factor

When a manager reviews your performance, there’s always a fear that your performance will be linked to your compensation because of which feedback from managers is usually utilized by employees only to get desired salary compensation and not to improve oneself.

Peer feedback is more of informal feedback received by employees from their peers, which can be utilized solely for improving performance. This level of comfort helps employees make each other better without letting the fear factor in.

Self-evaluation And Development

Peer feedback allows employees to gain an understanding of their own work as well as the work of their peers. This allows employees to figure out an effective way to utilize the skills of their peers and be productive as a team.

Asking your peers for feedback regularly helps you understand your areas of development. With peer feedback, you can also communicate your suggestions and ideas effectively. It allows everyone on the team to self-evaluate and develop themselves because they receive feedback from various sources.

Different Types of Peer Feedback

In the dynamic workplace landscape, various types of peer feedback, ranging from constructive critiques to positive reinforcement, play a pivotal role in shaping professional growth, enhancing collaboration, and fostering a culture of continuous improvement.

  1. Constructive Feedback: Constructive feedback focuses on specific behaviors or actions, offering suggestions for improvement. It aims to guide colleagues toward enhanced performance by addressing areas that need development while maintaining a positive and supportive tone.
  2. Positive Reinforcement: Positive reinforcement involves acknowledging and praising a colleague’s strengths, accomplishments, or positive contributions. This type of feedback boosts morale, fosters a positive work environment, and encourages the repetition of exemplary behaviors.
  3. Developmental Feedback: Developmental feedback is geared towards an individual’s long-term growth. It delves into potential areas for skill enhancement or professional development, providing insights and suggestions to help the recipient progress in their career.
  4. Specific Task Feedback: This type of feedback concentrates on a particular task or project, offering insights into the execution, efficiency, and quality of the work. It provides valuable information for improvement on specific assignments.
  5. Behavioral Feedback: Behavioral feedback focuses on an individual’s actions, communication style, or interpersonal skills. It helps in fostering self-awareness and promoting positive changes in behavior to enhance teamwork and collaboration.
  6. Recognition Feedback: Recognition feedback involves acknowledging and appreciating a colleague’s efforts, accomplishments, or contributions. This type of feedback boosts motivation, job satisfaction, and a sense of value within the team.
  7. 360-Degree Feedback: In a 360-degree feedback process, employees receive input from various sources, including peers, superiors, subordinates, and even clients. This comprehensive approach provides a holistic view of an individual’s performance and impact within the organization.
  8. Goal-Centric Feedback: Goal-centric feedback aligns with an individual’s objectives and key performance indicators. It assesses progress toward specific goals, offering insights into how well the colleague is advancing towards achieving their professional targets.
  9. Crisis Intervention Feedback: This type of feedback is provided in response to a critical situation or a challenge. It aims to address issues promptly, providing constructive solutions and support to navigate and overcome challenges effectively.
  10. Cultural Fit Feedback: Cultural fit feedback evaluates how well an individual aligns with the organization’s values, mission, and work culture. It helps in maintaining a cohesive and harmonious team dynamic by ensuring alignment with shared values and goals.
Also Read: Everything you need to know about 360 feedback

The practice of peer feedback in the workplace emerges as a powerful catalyst for individual and collective growth. As colleagues engage in constructive conversations, recognizing strengths, offering insights, and addressing areas for improvement, a culture of continuous improvement takes root. This not only enhances individual performance but also strengthens team dynamics, fostering a collaborative environment where innovation thrives.

Employee Engagement

Want to know how sharing peer feedback can help everyone in your organization?

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Kylee Stone

Kylee Stone supports the professional services team as a CX intern and psychology SME. She leverages her innate creativity with extensive background in psychology to support client experience and organizational functions. Kylee is completing her master’s degree in Industrial-Organizational psychology at the University of Missouri Science and Technology emphasizing in Applied workplace psychology and Statistical Methods.

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