Top Three Tips for Increasing ROI on Feedback

aug 2016 blog v2By: Rose Cartolari

Most people I know cringe when they hear the words “let me give you some feedback…” or even when they have to give feedback to a team member or an employee. We dread emotionally charged conversations and brace ourselves for it. But, well delivered, valuable and genuine feedback can truly help people move towards the best version of themselves and reach top performance levels. The ROI on feedback then becomes enormous.

So how do you get great at giving feedback? Here are my top 3 tips:

  1. Flex your feedback muscle daily by embedding feedback into your everyday conversations (including soliciting feedback for yourself). The more you focus on finding opportunities to exchange feedback, the more you set the tone of your conversations and create a positive mindset that getting and giving input is a normal part of conducting business. So when you do have to have a more difficult conversation, people are listening to you in a different way and are less likely to take things personally.
  2. Prepare the tone and feel of your feedback conversation, not just the facts. Most “negative” conversations are not about the actual facts around a situation, but more about a conflict of feelings, interpretations, and values. So think about arming yourself with a plan for creating emotional receptivity and a supporting environment rather than just knowing your facts. And if you have actively and consistently treated the person with respect, dignity, and caring, (see # 1 above) then the “difficult” conversation is absorbed in a completely different context. The employee is more likely to view the discussion as a precious gift or investment made in their career goals and the results will align with BOTH of your expectations.
  3. Listen in the way you want to be listened to. Do you want the other party to give you a fair, unbiased hearing? Well, you need to do the same. When you focus on ensuring that the other person is “being heard” and being supported, it is more likely that both of you will influence each other. Chances are that you will learn something new and see a more complete picture of the situation. The feedback session then becomes a genuine brainstorming opportunity for shared goals, improving both career trajectories and/or business skills.

When you view feedback as an opportunity for true connection, as a precious gift of information to (and from) someone worthy, the whole nature of the conversation changes for the better and the ROI increases.

What other strategies for feedback do you find effective? I’d be interested in hearing your thoughts. I can be reached here and on LinkedIn.

About the Author:

Rose Cartolari is a Sr. Consultant, Facilitator, and C-Suite Coach with Executive Development Associates, bringing extensive experience in helping leaders create strategic growth for themselves and their organizations. Rose has a broad background developing and delivering tailored leadership development programs for clients ranging from multinational companies to corporate executives. Having lived and been educated in India, Indonesia, Somalia, the United States, and Italy, Rose is at home in many cultures.