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Start, Stop, Continue Feedback: Examples and Usage

Andrew Langat
November 3, 2022
One executive giving feedback to another executive.
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One of the most popular and effective ways to give feedback is the Start, Stop, Continue model. This feedback model involves identifying what someone needs to start doing (start), what they need to stop doing (stop), and what they need to continue doing (continue).

Start, Stop, and Continue is popular because it is concise and makes it easy to give – and receive – feedback when working with a team, business, or project. It is also effective because it guides the person giving the feedback to focus on the positive (start) and the areas for improvement (stop and continue) separately. This can help prevent the person receiving the feedback from feeling overwhelmed or defensive.

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What is Start, Stop, Continue Feedback?

Start, Stop, Continue feedback is a simple but effective tool for reflection, constructive feedback, and improvement. The basic premise is that you take a step back and reflect on what you are to start doing (start), what you should stop doing (stop), and what you should continue doing (continue). It's also a great framework for formulating start-stop-continue questions to guide discussions and gain insights.

The Start, Stop, Continue retrospective addresses three critical areas for optimum performance.

  • What you should start doing (Start)

As a team member, you need to focus on or begin these behaviors immediately to improve performance on assigned tasks.

Examples of questions to guide you:

"What do I need to start doing to hit my deadlines?"

"What should I do to better contribute in team meetings?"

  • What you should stop doing (Stop)

As a team member, you also need to focus on actions or behaviors that need to be eliminated as they negatively impact performance or do not add any value to your work.

Examples of questions to guide you:

"What do I need to stop to better align with the company values?"

"Which behavior do I need to cut to better connect with my team members?

  • What you should keep doing (Continue)

These are the behaviors and actions that you have implemented and need to keep up with as the adds value to your work performance.

Examples of questions to guide you:

"At the team level, where do I shine the best?"

"Is there a sales technique that brings in customers?"

The Start, Stop, Continue brainchild is Dr. Phil Daniels, a psychology professor.

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What Is the Importance of Feedback in a Workplace?

Feedback is important in a workplace because it lets employees know what they are doing well and what needs improvement. It also allows managers to see how their employees perform their responsibilities and identify areas where they may need additional training or support.

Many managers struggle with giving feedback because they feel uncomfortable, despite knowing this can improve a team's performance. This may be due to a leadership weakness, not wanting to pass along negative feedback, or simply a lack of proper training on how t offer feedback in a way that helps direct reports take concrete action.

However, great feedback improves communication, builds trust, nurtures new ideas, increases performance, offers actionable insights, and can be a great tool for problem-solving.

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Who Is Start, Stop, Continue Meant For?

The Start, Stop Continue is meant for teams. This is because it requires the input of more than one team member to get actionable feedback. Whereas there is no upper limit on the number of team members who can engage in this exercise, a team leader needs to limit the amount of feedback or the number of people involved to something manageable to increase performance.

Unlike 360-degree feedback, this feedback is not anonymous, and query answers are known to all participants.

The most important point is this: it's essential to come up with start, stop, and continue ideas that foster open communication and drive team improvement.

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Who Should Conduct a Start, Stop, and Continue Retrospective?

Since it is used to provide feedback, it is best used by managers, business leaders, performance evaluators, and teams. That said, individuals can also deploy it to continuously improve.

One executive giving feedback on laptop to another executive.

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What Are the Benefits of Start, Stop, Continue?

When incorporated as part of a team's core activities, it has the following benefits:

  • It is a simple yet effective way to manage and improve processes.
  • It helps identify and eliminate waste, optimize resources, and improve quality.
  • It can target specific areas for improvement or assess a process's overall performance.
  • It is a versatile tool that can be tailored to the specific needs of any organization.
  • It is easy to implement and does not require any special training or resources.
  • It makes a feedback exercise a habit that helps build trust and gives team members ideas on how they can continuously improve.
  • It can be a great tool for replacing annual performance reviews.
  • It offers an opportunity to brainstorm ideas.
  • Feedback gives employees clear next steps towards improvement. It can also help them discern whether they are the best fit for a particular task or if they need assistance or resources.

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What Are the Disadvantages of Start, Stop, Continue?

There are a few disadvantages to using the Start, Stop, Continue change model.

First, deciding which behavior to target for change can be difficult. This is because human behavior is not linear.

Second, getting people to start or stop doing a behavior can be difficult, even when a behavior is targeted. This is because changing human behavior is difficult and often takes time.

Finally, this model does not always lead to sustained changes in behavior over time.

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When to Use Start, Stop, Continue Feedback?

This feedback model can be used in several different situations, including:

  • When you want to give employees an overview of their performance.
  • When you are at a critical crossroads, and you need actionable feedback before pivoting.
  • When you want to identify areas for improvement.
  • When you want to encourage employees to continue doing something that they are doing well.
  • When you want to implement a personal development plan.
  • When you are a new manager and you want to learn more about an entire team.
  • When your company has undergone a large transition, such as mergers, acquisitions, or downsizing, and you want to identify ways to improve your team's performance through fresh ideas.
  • As part of product strategy. This will offer insight into what is working and what is not.

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Performing a Start, Stop, Continue as a Manager for an Entire Team

As a manager, you can use the Start, Stop, Continue template to offer actionable feedback to a team and avoid a negative impact. For best results, do the following:

  • Send an invite to team members: For effective feedback, send an invite informing them that they are about to participate in a Start, Stop, Continue meeting. This sets the right mind frame.
  • Select a topic for review: Picking a topic area streamlines the process. Selecting a topic that matters to the team's performance is important. For example, you can select a topic such as "better communication in the workplace."
  • Advise on specific actions: Always remember that the objective is to offer actionable feedback. This means that advice should point to actionable steps and not generalities.
  • Offer context and reasons: When mentioning why an employee should start, stop, or continue, offer context and reasons that better illustrate your point.
  • Be objective and avoid personalization: When using the Start, Stop, Continue exercise, it is important to remain objective and avoid personalization. This will help you focus on the goal of the exercise.

Once you have laid the groundwork, use a whiteboard and create three columns: Start, Stop, and Continue. Ask team members to write down what needs to start, stop, and continue, and then place a sticky note in the appropriate column.

For best results, ensure that each team member has three votes. Once team members have placed their sticky notes on the appropriate column, review what's in each. You can then discuss the results with the team.

Once an agreement is reached, assign responsibilities and deadlines to implement resolutions on time.

Asking for Start, Stop, Continue Feedback Exercise as an Employee

As an employee, you can request Start, Stop, and Continue feedback from your managers. To do so effectively, do the following:

  • Ask clear questions on areas or actions you need to Start, Stop, and Continue.
  • Try and get feedback from more than one manager for a holistic view.
  • Create a good rapport to facilitate honest feedback.

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What Are Examples of Start, Stop, Continue Feedback Exercises?

There are several good Start, Stop, Continue examples, but ut in this article we want to focus on sustaining a positive work environment and achieving personal goals. Here are examples of Start, Stop, Continue exercises to use, especially when providing start-stop-continue feedback examples for employees:

Creating a Positive Work Environment

As a manager, creating a positive work environment means maintaining an action-oriented team. This is because team members feel safe exercising their creativity. A feedback template can look as below:


  1. Sending Personalized gift vouchers for birthdays, anniversaries, etc.
  2. Paying attention to mental health of the team and how it relates to job performance.


  1. Taking other people's ideas as your own.
  2. Public admonishment.


  1. Weekly meetings.
  2. Continuously improving team members' skills.

Achieving a Personal Goal

Assuming that you want to improve your Google Sheet skills over a six-month period, you can create your own Start, Stop, Continue feedback to streamline the process.

For example, rather than go on a crash course that might overwhelm you, your Start, Stop, Continue template can look like this:


  1. Decide on time slots to upskill every week for six months.
  2. Meeting learning deadlines.


  1. Procrastinating on new projects.
  2. Stop making excuses when you miss set deadlines.


  1. Learning new ideas from different sources.
  2. Completing assigned tasks.

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How Often Should a Company Use Start, Stop, Continue Feedback?

There's no one answer to this question – it depends on the company, its culture, and what's happening. However, Start, Stop, and Continue feedback should be given relatively frequently – perhaps quarterly, annually, or when you complete a project.

This way, employees receive timely feedback that can help them improve continuously.

Inspiring, isn’t it ? Want to learn more about connecting self-awareness to professional development? Get in touch today.

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How Highrise Can Help

Do you struggle with carrying out a feedback exercise?

If so, you are not alone. A survey done by the Harvard Business Review established that up to 44% of managers struggle with giving feedback.

Reasons may range from a lack of confidence, avoiding confrontation, not wanting to give negative feedback, or simply a lack of training.

Coaching for executives and leaders will be helpful if your goal is to improve your team's success; reach out today for a solution.


What are Good start, stop, continue examples for teams?

Good Start, Stop, Continue examples for teams focus on enhancing collaboration and efficiency. Teams should start implementing regular team-building exercises and using effective communication tools. They should stop working in isolation and overlooking team feedback. It's essential to continue with practices like weekly meetings and celebrating achievements.

What action would you want your peers to continue doing?

I'd want my peers to continue their practice of open communication and consistently sharing feedback and insights, which fosters a collaborative and transparent work environment.

What should my company start doing, keep doing, stop doing?

Your company should start embracing new technologies and continuous training. Continue upholding employee feedback and teamwork. Stop practices that limit open communication or curb innovation.

What action would you want your supervisor to start doing?

Start scheduling regular one-on-one meetings.

Start providing real-time feedback on tasks.

Start offering tailored professional development opportunities.

Start promoting open-door policies for spontaneous discussions.

Start recognizing individual achievements in team meetings.

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Andrew Langat
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Andrew Langat is an experienced content specialist in Leadership, Productivity, Education, Fintech, and Research. He is an avid reader and loves swimming as a hobby. He believes that quality content should be actionable and helpful.