October 16, 2013

Putting the Power of Feedback to Work

I bet this is not on your to-do list for today!

How do I know?

Because few people wake up in the morning and say to themselves, “I can hardly wait to get to work today and get some constructive criticism”.  Or, "I sure hope my in-law's call today and give me some constructive criticism on my parenting today."  Do you know anyone who enjoys receiving criticism at all?  In most cases feedback does not resonate with us or feel good because it is meant as criticism.  But let me share a little secret, your ability to seek and receive feedback will help you improve in any area of your life you want to get better at.  Ken Blanchard’s, “The One Minute Manager” sold over 13MM copies!  Blanchard is an expert on performance and he says , “Feedback is the breakfast of champions”.

There is tremendous value in creating "feedback loops" and the research supporting the value of feedback is compelling.  Studies conducted by Albert Bandura, a Stanford University psychologist concluded when you receive feedback and regularly evaluate progress towards a goal you greatly increase the likelihood of achieving it.  So if you want to be a better leader, a better spouse, a better parent, or a better friend you will benefit from feedback.

The key is to identify subject matter experts you know who care about your performance and development and ask them for feedback.  Although it is not necessarily comfortable to seek out or receive feedback it will help you improve faster than doing it alone.  The great thing almost anyone you would ask is they love to help.  All you need to do is ask.   What do you need help with today?  Who could help?  Seek them out and enjoy the “breakfast of champions” today!

What advice do you have for offering feedback?

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