Here are ten lessons that emerged from the great dialog in my two recent Feedback Boot Camp workshops.
- We all appreciate feedback from trusted sources on what we are doing that is working and what we can strengthen or change to improve our success. In general, people feel as if they don’t receive enough of this quality feedback.
- Our memory banks are filled with examples where managers or colleagues have given us feedback that felt more like an attack than support and coaching. It’s sad but true: people struggle to identify feedback examples that made a significant difference in their performance or success.
- Saving up feedback is never a good plan. The worst example is “dump truck” feedback, where the manager unloads everything they’ve seen us do wrong at one time—typically during the annual performance evaluation.
- The idea of giving or receiving feedback generates stress for all parties. We need to work hard to build a quality feedback culture.
- Creating a healthy feedback environment includes baking expectations for it into group values and a manager or team lead who models great feedback behaviors and teaches quality feedback practices.
- Positive feedback is powerful. We should work harder on helping individuals recognize and go-long with their positive behaviors.
- Since “observed behaviors” are the foundation of quality feedback, we have to create more virtual opportunities via team meetings, briefings, ideation sessions, and other events to catch our team members in action.
- It pays to take time to think through how we open our feedback sessions. During the practice segments, there was widespread surprise and agreement at how important and how difficult it is to construct an opening sentence that incorporates the building blocks of quality feedback and sets the right tone for the discussion.
- Great feedback discussions are a dialog, not a monologue.
- Not all feedback is offered with our best interests in mind. Seek out feedback from trusted sources. We can choose to ignore feedback when the intent is questionable.
Written by: Art Petty, Owner, for Art Petty Group.