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How Does “Feedback” Make You Feel?

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How Does “Feedback” Make You Feel?

Barbara Nixon By Barbara Nixon

3 Ways to make feedback work for you

Let me ask you a question…how does the word ‘feedback’ make you feel?

Great, it’s good to know what people think.


Not something you really like that much!

It wouldn’t surprise me if you weren’t exactly overjoyed at the thought, as for many managers this small word can send shivers down their spine, and the thought of it being a gift? Nope!

But what is it about that one word that can make us feel, well, rubbish?

The thing is that for so many the word ‘feedback’ feels like criticism, and being told we’re doing something wrong or that we need to improve in some way, isn’t always something that we’re racing to hear. But here’s the thing…feedback really does have its advantages you only have to look at the world of sport to see how it can make a difference. If we were an athlete, an Olympian for that matter, we’d be openly asking and expecting for feedback from our coach as even the smallest of changes can mean the difference between Silver and Gold.

So, how can we use this mentality in our work to make a difference to us?

  1. Change the way you think about it

Instead of dreading the very thought of feedback try thinking of it as a good thing.  By getting an idea of the things you can do to improve the way you behave or perform at work can sometimes make a massive difference, so try and focus on the positives of what it’s helping you with.

  1. Openly ask for it

By putting yourself in the driving seat you can control how and when you receive feedback. So, have a go at asking for it from your team. This can work at the end of your one to one’s to see if there’s anything else your team need from you, or you could try just asking if they’ve any feedback for you. This will help your team understand that feedback isn’t just one way, and that you’re looking to improve too.

  1. Get an accountability buddy

Ask a colleague to work as your feedback buddy, and to give you feedback on how you come across in certain situations e.g. in meetings, doing a presentation etc.  This can work wonders and really helps to give you helpful tips on how you can make any tweaks you need to. You can do the same for them too.

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