It’s been repeatedly said that feedback is a gift! Ultimately, feedback allows you as an individual, leader or organisation to grow, innovate, perform and helps you to stay in tune with what’s happening - all of which will boost your competitive edge! Of course that all depends on how you decide to look at it? ‘Decide’ being the operative word here.
You can view feedback as criticism or explore it as a development opportunity to refine how and why you do what you do.
Decades of neuroscience research shows that our belief about learning can impact how we receive and even how we deliver feedback. Having a growth mindset; the belief that skills can be improved with time and effort, means leaders can harness this piece of neuroscience by rewarding improvement rather than simply focusing on results and outcomes alone. It’s important to understand that it’s how we behave, i.e. the way we do things, that drives culture so being able to effectively link feedback to specific behaviour that led to the result or outcome, will promote further learning and growth.
Given organisations are increasingly recognising the benefits of divergent thinking, workplace tension and conflict will naturally rise as a necessary by-product of teaming and collaboration. It is our natural default to become defensive when we hear criticism as it triggers our primitive brain to switch to protection mode. Equally individuals are at risk of becoming easily offended as you start to invite more open and honest communication.
If you are a leader or an organisation experiencing this type of tension within your team, it might be time to cultivate an environment that encourages clear, open communication where people feel safe sharing their thoughts honestly without fear of retaliation or humiliation, as well as being open minded enough to receive feedback with curiosity. This is of course easier said than done, especially initially, however overtime this will create a culture where feedback equals healthy creative open dialogue and where customer experience, organisational outcomes, team culture and individual growth become the focus and your competitive edge.
Here are some leadership tips to help you harness the power of feedback
Spend time at the outset to reframe feedback as development rather than criticism which trigger’s protection mode. Get your team to agree on how they would like to share and receive feedback so that everyone is clear.
Encourage a growth mindset by shifting your language and focus to be centred on the strategy and process rather than the end result itself.
Reward and celebrate improvement.
Leaders, adopt a coaching style when appropriate. It's the equivalent of saying you believe in the people you hired.
Giving advice and solutions may suggest you are judging someone’s capacity to generate their own. Leaders should empower people to consider their options and provide them with thinking space to do so.
A culture of growth and innovation requires Leaders and teams to continuously look for ways to improve the customer experience. To do so requires us to understand the customer experience, continuously look for ways to improve it and define how any change will help our customers.
Organization’s seeking continuous improvement, also seek 360 feedback. Find ways for feedback to travel up, down, sideways, internal and external. Performance Reviews and employee ‘stay’ interviews are a few ways. Add employee engagement surveys, NPS, CSAT and regular dialogues about the experience people have with us.
To discover how we can help you, get in touch with us today. 0498 800 008 or 0407 776 888