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The gift of feedback

One of the most vital skills in communication and any team-building is the gift of feedback. The practice of effective feedback, or expressing impact and other possibility rather than behavioral correction, is a vital part of any successful team or relationship.

So why is it so hard for many people to accept or give? What is it that we are so afraid to say? What if the feedback you’re giving or receiving is truly a gift?

Carole shares a thought here:

First, it’s important to examine your relationship to feedback you’re hearing. Ask yourself the following key questions:

Is this feedback consistent? Am I hearing the same thing frequently? If you’re facing a reaction, whether positive or negative, ask yourself—what is the specific feeling associated with my reaction? What is beneath the immediate emotional reaction? What can I learn about myself from this feedback?

From there, it becomes much easier to understand the teachings within the feedback. When feedback is accepted for the purpose of learning rather than simply correction, you gain an understanding of yourself and your impact that can truly be a gift.

When giving feedback, it’s also important to reverse those questions:

Am I giving feedback for the sake of teaching or correction?Is the person in reaction to that feedback, whether positive or negative? What could be true for them in this moment? What can I learn from the impact of that feedback?

Relationships and communication are truly the ultimate teaching tools. Success as a whole is generally determined by our ability to grow and expand our relationships and networks. The further you’re willing to go in practicing new perspectives, the bigger your results can become.

What are some experiences you’ve had with either effective or ineffective feedback?  What have you learned about yourself as a result?

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