We all need people who will give us feedback. That’s how we improve.–Bill Gates

Can you believe it’s the 4th QTR of 2018? How are you doing?  How are you feeling? Have you accomplished all that you planned for, or will the next few months be action packed?

Hopefully your annual plan included soliciting feedback. Bill Gates’ quote above shares that we need feedback to improve.

As leaders, we may be more comfortable giving feedback than receiving it.  We view giving feedback as part of our job and have scheduled meetings (one on ones, performance appraisals) that lend themselves to discussing the positive behaviors and accomplishments, as well as the missed goals and opportunities.

We all have perceptions as to how our peers, subordinates, and business partners would evaluate us, but we rarely solicit feedback on a regular basis.   So what can we do?

You can start simple.  Ask 3 questions:

  • What do I do that makes a difference that you want me to continue doing?
  • What am I doing that you want me to stop?
  • What could I do better?

You may also want to consider using a formal 360’ feedback program – we use Wiley’s 363 For Leaders tool that evaluates 8 approaches for effective leadership (pioneering, energizing, affirming, inclusive, humble, deliberate, resolute and commanding). (Contact us if you want to learn more).

As leaders it’s pretty much a given that we provide regular and honoring feedback to our staff or team members, but there’s added value to the organization when we extend this to include peers and our boss.

How do you feel about both giving and receiving feedback? Do you find the process constructive and a learning experience?

Make sure any feedback you provide is timely, well intended, and delivered in an honoring way.  Also, when you receive feedback, you don’t necessarily have to take action – listen to what you’re being told, process it, and evaluate if acting on it would serve you well.

Remember, the whole idea of feedback is to grow and improve!

Author Alexander Lucia says:
Truly great leaders spend as much time collecting and acting upon feedback as they do providing it.