Today's podcast focuses on what can go wrong when giving feedback and how to avoid this from happening. When the principles of giving feedback have not been learnt or mastered, conversations can become difficult. This especially can occur if negative feedback is heard as a criticism.
To avoid having a poor experience of either giving or receiving feedback, the important thing is to prepare thoroughly for the meeting. Time spent in preparation is time well spent.
Today's Key Points:
- Remember the purpose for giving feedback. The aim is to facilitate learning by reinforcing good behaviour, and identifying where and how to improve on less optimal performance.
- Master the technique of giving feedback well. Remind yourself of this from Podcast 31.
- Focus on their behaviour and NOT the person. Do not criticise the person to whom you are talking. Help them to work out what it is about their behaviour that needs to change.
- Prepare thoroughly for the feedback session. Thorough preparation will help you to stay calm, focussed and in control of the session, however anxious or difficult the meeting may become.
- Think through how the conversation will flow. What are your opening words? How you get started can make all the difference to the feedback session.
- Anticipate how your feedback might be received. Try and predict the responses to the points you raise, and plan how you would then respond to these various responses.
- Rehearse your session. The more you rehearse, the easier will be the "real thing".
- Critically, rehearse OUT LOUD. Listen to yourself - your tone of voice, inflection in your words, pauses, etc. How you say something is as important as the actual words themselves. By listening to yourself, you can pick up whether the stresses are in the right place, for example.
Three Ways to Listen: