Four Weeks to Fantastic Feedback: Keep Feedback Going On All 4 Wheels!
Updated: Nov 3, 2020
If you’ve gotten this far, you are seeing some wins! By now, most or all individuals on your team are adding to the group’s performance level, and many are proud of how they are developing their own skills.
Yes, reducing your own feedback fears and avoidance is a huge accomplishment. But you must keep your new feedback “vehicle” on the road in order to continuously experience the business value of feedback. These four feedback activities will ensure that you have launched a continuous success cycle:
1st Wheel: Keep Giving Feedback to Everyone in a Calm, Natural Way Regularly ask everyone how it’s going with the items you talked about with them. When you see good changes happening, say so! After people make real improvements, you can fine tune their improvements with more feedback—including both positive reinforcement and improvement suggestions. Be honest, give feedback frequently, and keep yourself calm to convey an attitude of: “This is not a big-deal judgement of you. We’re all just getting better and better.”
Start having feedback conversations in the hall or open cubicles if you can maintain a comfortable tone and if the other person seems comfortable. What’s so great is that these follow up conversations may only take a few minutes of your time but pay out massively.
2nd Wheel: Keep Seeking Feedback & Act On It At the end of every single feedback conversation with your team members, ask for feedback back. “How can I support you on this? How can I do a better job of leading the team? How can I improve the feedback I am giving to make it more helpful?”
Whatever they say, make sure you understand it. Write it down. Commit to a positive step and visibly—preferably in an exaggerated manner—act on the feedback!
3rd Wheel: Stretch Your Team’s Feedback Culture At the beginning of every meeting, remind people that you guys are still in the process of building an everyday feedback culture, that you want feedback from them at any point in the meeting if they have an improvement idea, and that you will reserve five minutes at the end of the meeting to brainstorm feedback items helpful for future meetings or plans.
Suggest that people open up their own meetings and conversations to giving and receiving feedback to improve everything they are doing. When anyone gives feedback or reports feedback conversations within their work activities, praise them for it! Don’t worry so much about how much you agree with what they say. Thank them openly in the meeting for sharing their feedback and encourage others to listen respectfully. Try to adopt suggestions that seem useful. If suggestions and others reactions eat up a lot of time, you can defer those conversations until a later time.
4th Wheel: Surprise & Delight Everyone with Continuous Wins! Recognize the team’s successes every chance you get and actively involve everyone in setting higher stretch goals—for themselves and for the team! Focus on stretch goals that are exciting and create a huge sense of pride. Focus on areas that deliver huge value to the company and goals that are highly respected by top leaders. Build the reputation that your team is an unstoppable development machine—moving powerfully on all four wheels!