How to Receive the Gift of Feedback

01 May 2016
Posted by Shira Ronen

By now, you’ve likely given the gift of feedback to your direct reports. Don’t forget that you can also receive the gift of feedback from those you work with! Gathering 360 feedback is actually the starting point of my coaching engagements as it gives direction on how you can become even better at your role.

I encourage you to ask for feedback regularly – after important milestones and meetings, or at minimum once a quarter. When you ask for feedback, the people you work with appreciate your desire to improve and will likely be pleased you are inviting them to help you. Asking for feedback, rather just waiting to be given it (typically, when issues come up), also makes you more receptive to listening to developmental feedback and acting on it.

Of course, there will also be times you receive feedback when you weren’t proactive about asking for it (a performance review or after an important presentation). Whether or not you asked to have a feedback conversation, it is important to be conscious of how you take it in, so that you make the most of it.

Tips on HOW to Receive Feedback:

  • Ask for specific details and examples. Don’t settle for generic feedback.
  • Make sure you have an understanding of whether the developmental issue is big and urgent or small and for long-term development
  • If you start to feel yourself getting defensive, take a breath and say “Thank you.” This is very challenging but is truly the best course of action.
  • Leave the conversation with clear action steps. If not offered, ask for advice and mentoring to overcome challenges.
  • Afterwards, calibrate what you heard with a select group. This will help you process the feedback and parse out what is most relevant.

I’d love to hear how these feedback conversations go for you. Please email me to share!

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