Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Most times, the feedback we give and receive may not be as helpful as we think...

Especially when we use words like "great" or "amazing". They don't communicate anything specific that the recipient can acknowledge or improve on.

You can actually help people grow by being strategic about how you give feedback, feedback that is useful, thoughtful and insightful.

So, when next you want to give feedback, take these into consideration;

1. Big-picture Focused

Your feedback should answer this question...

What should this individual do more or less of to be maximally effective?

This helps us to put the overall intent of giving feedback into context: improved effectiveness

2. Organizationally Aligned

Useful feedback starts with understanding the organisation's values and should not be based on personal preferences.

For example: saying a person has a good sense of humour may be based on what you like personally and not what is beneficial to the organisation.

3. Behavioural and Specific

Feedback should be specific to precisely what the person is doing before putting it under a label (such as "greatly" or "poorly").

Useful feedback should focus on what an individual is doing specifically.

4. Both Negative and Positive

Despite it being difficult to receive, negative feedback serves as an important fuel for other changes that are needed while positive feedback is one of the best drivers of engagement.

5. Prioritized

In giving feedback, ensure to prioritize what is most important and not a long list of what the person needs to do better at.

6. Linked to Impact

Link your feedback to the impact it has had on the organisation. How that positive (or negative) behaviour impacted the organisation or the people in the organisation.

This helps the person prioritize that behaviour further.

Giving feedback, that is truly useful requires more care and attention than is typically invested, but knowing the possible result, it is worth the effort.

Extracts are from a Harvard Business Review Article.

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