“Why would you give somebody feedback on something they’re already good at? Surely they know that already?”
So asked a delegate during a recent training session, admittedly to my surprise. But on further reflection, two useful questions for me to hear, and move the discussion along with the group, casting as it did further light on a) people’s views on the value of, and, b) the purpose of feedback.
So, why? Here are a few reasons why giving and receiving feedback is integral to your own development, and to creating the right kind of culture, one where people learn and grow continuously.
- Because sometimes people are intuitively good at a particular skill or process – they need to understand the value that that skill/process brings to the whole show
- Because it increases their self-awareness, and an understanding of others’ perspectives on their performance
- Because it gives them really specific information about what, precisely, to keep on doing more of (“Great job at the meeting today” is poor feedback; it doesn’t help the person understand which bit was great) and finally
- Because it does provide a balance to constructive feedback ie what to do less of/stop/do differently. Both are necessary. But if you only ever give/receive constructive feedback it’s usually, ultimately, demotivating
Whichever context you’re working with your people, they’ll need feedback. In the business development process, teamwork is integral to keeping the show on the road. This stuff takes time, effort, perseverance and resilience.
I often quote the legendary Peter Drucker: “Culture eats strategy for breakfast”. It’s important to have strategy, of course. But so is to have the appropriate culture to deliver it. Modelling desired behaviours, and good, timely, feedback is the thing that will help you with building the team you need.
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about the author
Nicky Denegri is our Senior Consultant. If you would like to know more about this subject, drop her an email and we will be in touch.