Taking feedback need not be a daunting task
Written by: Zena D’souza
Giving feedback is just one side of the coin. Taking feedback and working on it to ensure that it makes you better completes the loop. Why then taking feedback is a daunting task or a reason for discomfort for most of us. Some pointers that can help one become a good feedback taker:
- An open mind: This is the starting point to ensure that you take the feedback in the right manner. Easy to say … Difficult to do! However, one must practice this consciously. Start telling yourself at the start of the meeting that the person on the other side has your best interest at heart. This will make sure that you enter the meeting in the right frame of mind.
- Listen don’t hear: Most of us hear sentences and start forming a reply in defense before the speaker is done. Listening involves not only the ear but also the mind and the heart. So, make sure you are listening to everything being said.
- Respond don’t Defend: It is not necessary to immediately counter the feedback given. Even if you feel you must react as soon as possible – Don’t. Take a deep breath and write down the points. It’s always better to repeat what you have understood in order to be on the same page as the speaker.
- Schedule a time: Once the speaker is done giving feedback it’s always better to ask for a convenient time to meet. This ensures that you have time to frame your response if needed. It also makes the speaker feel that you have taken the feedback positively and would want to respond in order to clarify/learn more/give a different point of view etc
- Assertive not Aggressive: Be assertive about what you have to say. If you feel the speaker is not willing to listen or understand please put your comments in writing. Do not take feedback personally – most times it is given with the right intention.
Feedback can serve as a great ground for improvement provided it is given and taken in the spirit of learning.
Would love to hear your views.