Honest feedback is often just too darn subjective. What is most logical is to keep the process to as many more objective or near-objective measures and systems as possible.
Subjective evaluations do not generally help anyone--not the institution, not the patients, not the team, and not the nurses.
Subgroups can use subjective processes to divide and weed, and they are counterproductive.
Evaluations, like setting plans and goals for our patients, should be measureable and objective--or as objective and systematic as possible. People may like to manipulate situations, or are on the lazy side, so they prefer off-the-cuff, subjective stuff, and it's often capricious and invalid or weak.
Truly constructive feeback is objective feedback. I would LOVE to see this change in nursing--both in nursing education and in the workplace. No more BS. If you can measure it consistently, objectively, without unfair bias and manipulation, fine. If you can't, it's not shown to be valid. If we should take a lesson from evidence-based practice, it should also be applied to the workplace. Trouble is, who are doing such studies? If so, how are they being done?
Limit the subjectivity and then you have a professional approach--then there is validity and reliability to competence in practice. Over 20 some years, I have seen utter garbage, where nurses have suggested incompetence out of subjective, inconsistent, or unfair nonsense, and places lost good nurses, either to unfair terminations or attrition. See the trouble with striving for truly objective standards is that those that have influence and the ears of management--those that have consistently manipulated the system in their fair and have some dominance in the unit, floor, or workplace, they themselves would have to be measured by objective standards, and they would not be able to get away with unfair, subjective evaluations or influences so easily.
There are two main things that stop more objective systems of analysis and evalution within the nursing field. 1. Fear of litigation 2. Fear of having to practice what you preach in terms of fairness and excellence. 3. Fear of loss of influence and control from those that have made "in-roads" in thi regard. The latter are usually the source of trouble when it comes to not building truly cohesive teams on floors and units and within the hospital. I will explain. The science and rigor necessary to demonstrate that someone is imcompetent or somehow not a good "match" for the position is pretty touch when you strive for objective measures and standards. It means you have to be able to fairly and consistently back up what you say about said nurse-employee without the inclusion of imbalance and bias. But too many employers want to be able to use At-Will-Employment to the full power of it's benefit TO THEM. Thus if the standards and measures were more balanced and objective, it would take more time, energy, maybe even money to eliminate someone--and it would make it less likely that they could eliminate someone for capricious reasons. Sadly, too many employers like their ability to be capricious. And that's why there is so much of this whole emphasis on "fit," blah, blah, blah. Plus they don't want to rock the boat with the established people of influence within the unit, floor, or area of the hospital. And that comes down to playing politics, which ultimately comes down to lack of integrity in leadership.