The stakes for feedback are higher on teams because "learning what several people expect of you is far more difficult than learning what one other person expects and needs." (2) In effective teams, everyone helps each other to perform his/her role to meet expected outcomes--in Schein's words, "perpetual helping." But, feedback is the key mechanism for this helping. It is a means of constant course correction.
Because of the nature of personal exposure with feedback, the environment of trust on teams is essential. As Schein states, "What we think of as respect or trust is basically the feeling that you will not be humiliated or embarrassed even if your behavior deviates from the norm and is viewed as unhelpful. Instead you get task relevant information that allows you to figure out how to become more helpful in the effort to achieve goals." (2)
Helpful feedback is an art and skill which only develops with intentional practice. Practice gradually normalizes the discomfort of feedback.(3) Over time, a feedback-rich culture can make feedback less a source of anticipated discomfort and more a source of desired learning.
Key components of productive feedback include (from references 1 and 2):
(a) prior setting of team norms and work process specifications
(b) specific, concrete, behavioral descriptions related to achieving goals (not good vs. bad)
(c) avoidance of labels, generalizations, and characterizations (e.g. "You are lazy.")
(d) using "I" statements and owning feedback as perceptions as opposed to "Truth"
(e) asking for the other person's perception in response
(f) stating genuine positive regard along with the feedback wherever appropriate
(1) Schein, Edgar Helping: How to Offer, Give, and Receive Help Berrewtt-Koehler Publishers,Inc., 2009
(2) Scholtes, Peter R. et al The Team Handbook, Third Edition Oriel Incorporated, 2003
(3) Brown, Brene Daring Greatly Gotham Books, 2012