Feedback? what comes to mind when you hear that word? BOHICA? Bend Over Here it Comes Again!? In many organisations feedback is just a moderately polite way of beating someone up, or a way of making you feel you have ‘done your job’ and ‘sorted someone out’ – as you SHOULD as a manager. But it doesn’t have to be like that……
This blog post was inspired by Sarah Williams and Lis Geake and their comments on my last posting about ‘yes but…’
Lis’s very precise take on feedback (I’m choosing my words carefully here as I know she’ll be checking this!) “It would be a lot easier to avoid ‘yes but’ if people giving praise focused on specifics. “You did great work” isn’t half as much use as “The errors you corrected in my presentation have saved me a lot of time and saved my blushes”. It’s much harder to say ‘but’ after specific praise, which pops up in childcare books but is just as worth doing for adults. Should I be bold and share this thought on Caroline’s blog? Maybe, but…”
Some key tips for giving feedback:
- be sincere – if people detect you don’t mean it they will lose trust in you
- know why you are giving it – do you genuinely intend it to help them improve their performance or boost their morale, or just to cover your back?
- adopt the ‘Dutch’ belief about feedback – how can someone act on something if they don’t know about it? rather than the British approach that it’s either i) a cruel and heartless thing to do and should only be used in extremis (if negative) or ii) a very unBritish expression of emotion and they should just know I think it’s good (when positive)
- a useful formula for being specific is ‘AID’ – what was the ACTION, what was the IMPACT, what could they DO more of/do differently or DEVELOP
What are your top tips for effective feedback? share your thoughts here or on my Facebook page: CarolineTalbottLtd Facebook
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