Giving Tough Feedback: 3 Big Ideas


Thursday, we hosted a Leadership Lab on Giving Tough Feedback Without Aggravating Your Colleagues. Two dozen Chicago leaders from across industries and sectors came together to improve our feedback skills. Laura Armstrong facilitated a high-paced and productive session that included these three big ideas:


Starting with a growth mindset is key for both giving or receiving feedback. Having a growth mindset means believing that people have unlimited potential to learn and grow. A growth mindset is characterized by phrases like “challenges help me grow” and “feedback helps all of us”. Approaching feedback with this lens leads to more productive conversations and better outcomes.


In their new book, Nine Lies About Work, authors Marcus Buckingham and Ashley Goodall share their research about how managers should spend the majority of time and energy reinforcing positive behaviors and finding ways to amplify the strengths of their team members. Giving tough feedback will be more effective and better received if you're also providing positive feedback on an ongoing and regular basis. Their interview on the HBR Podcast is a great 20 minute listen!


The outline for providing effective feedback begins with clearly identifying the purpose for the conversation - what happened and who/what was impacted. The second step is to deliver that information with the right mindset and motivation, seeking to understand, limiting qualifiers and keeping the recipients best interest at heart. And lastly is to facilitate a joint commitment to action - a clear path forward that both parties understand and agree to.

For further reading, Crucial Conversations is a great resource and we hope to see you at our next Leadership Lab: The Science of Motivation and the Power of Belief on August 13th.  

The Ignite TeamComment