Great managers listen to their team and facilitate team members, so they speak up. These free team feedback tools are excellent ways to conduct polls to make decisions, create spaces for discussions, and allow bonding through off-topic ideas.
Many of these apps put a premium on anonymity so that there is no way for a boss to retaliate when given negative feedback. Managers should start seeking feedback anonymously. If you build up trust over time and show your employees that there won’t be retribution for feedback and managers take timely action, they will likely sign their names to their comments.
1. Moored (Web): Collect Anonymous Feedback From a Team
Moored is a simple and lightweight web app to collect feedback from a team, whether over time or during a live meeting. The tool is also excellent for brainstorming sessions or a short-term discussion board on a topic.
Offering the convenience of no-signup websites, you can start a Moored room in seconds. Set a room name, add a description, and share the link with other participants for them to join. You can also add categories, which can even be in the form of questions to facilitate conversations.
Participants can join the room and add a simple text comment, which is automatically anonymous. You can add comments to a Category to sort them neatly. Anyone with the link will have full edit and delete rights, but you can always discuss with your team that only the meeting runner will get to set the agenda and categories.
2. ShuffleThink (Web): Structured Way to Get Team’s Opinions and Ideas on a Topic
When you want your team to talk about a topic, some voices can drown out others, whether on video, audio, chat or in person. ShuffleThink wants to be like a discussion board for one topic at a time and let everyone give their opinion in a structured way.
Here’s how it works. When you create a new Focus Group on ShuffleThink, you have to add a topic of discussion and set a period for the discussion (one day, one week, or one month). The focus group has five sections:
- Objective Data: Only for facts about the topic of discussion, not opinions
- Reasons to agree: You are encouraged to give logical reasons to support the topic
- Reasons to disagree: Give logical reasons to oppose the topic
- Creative alternatives and ideas: This is where people can come up with suggestions around the topic
- Emotional reactions: You don’t have to always have logic. Let your heart speak.
Anyone can add a comment card with a text comment, a URL link, or an image in each section. With the five-section view, it’s easier to go through comments in their appropriate place. But you can also choose to view all comments, unsegregated, in chronological order.
3. Iteamize (Web): Share Movie, Book, Game Recommendations in Teams
Slack channels and video calls can often derail into off-topic discussions about great movies you watched about a specific topic or fantastic book recommendations in a particular genre. Iteamize is a space for teams to create lists of recommendations and share them.
Create an account in Iteamize, add a team, and invite members to it. You can also create multiple teams and switch between them. Then start a new list, choosing from 10 types of items: music albums, anime, books, games, movies, music artists, songs, sports, TV shows, and default (text only).
Iteamize adds a search engine to show rich results in each type of list. For example, if you search for a movie to add to a list, the resulting card will grab information from its IMDb page like a movie poster, star cast, rating, and a short description.
You can create as many lists as you want with unlimited items. Team members can like an item to raise its rank and leave comments on the card. Iteamize becomes a straightforward place to check when you wonder what that colleague’s recommendation was.
4. Friday Pulse (Web): Track Your Team’s Weekly Happiness Score
Friday Pulse sends out a weekly email to all team members with a questionnaire. In this, each member chooses how happy they were with work this week on a five-point scale of emojis. Members are also encouraged to share their successes, frustrations, and ideas and thank colleagues who have helped them in their journey in the week. A fun question is meant to act as a workplace icebreaker for colleagues.
This data is collected in a simple dashboard for the team manager to review. This shows the response rate in the week and how much better or worse you are compared to the previous week. It’s a cool little presentation to figure out where you can improve and what people are saying or thinking.
Every three months, Friday Pulse sends the “Five Ways to Happiness at Work” survey, which is an expanded questionnaire of 15 discussion points. These are based on the five key areas of workplace happiness: Connect, Be Fair, Empower, Challenge, and Inspire. Again, you’ll get a detailed report of what your team is feeling and how you can improve.
5. Xoyondo (Web): Create Anonymous Polls or Public Polls and Schedule Meetings
Xoyondo achieves two common tasks that require feedback from your team. The first is to find a time slot for a meeting that is convenient for everyone. And the second is to create an opinion poll, whether anonymous or public.
The idea of a poll where you can see what everyone voted for is cool and different. Sure, you can make an anonymous poll for sensitive topics where privacy is important. But when you’re all deciding where to hold the team lunch, it’s nice to see where everyone stands. We’d go so far as to say Xoyondo is one of the best sites to make an online poll.
The meeting scheduler is also simple to use. You can go for a date-only calendar or specify time slots within any selected dates. Once the options are created, share the link with teammates, and they can choose their preferred time slot.
You don’t need to register for a Xoyondo account to schedule a meeting or create an opinion poll. However, if you’re going to make several of them and want them in a neat dashboard, it’s worth creating a free account.
Be Transparent, Not Defensive
With so many tools to hear how your customers are doing, it’s more than likely that you will hear things you didn’t want to hear. But at such times, it’s important not to get defensive. While you might have your reasons, don’t be in a rush to explain your side.
Experts say a better strategy is to acknowledge the feedback and say what action you plan to take, even if it’s as simple as saying you plan to reflect on it and get back. It’s also advisable to be transparent with what you will do with the feedback, as those are the small things that build trust among teams.