We all know the importance of giving feedback to others, especially employees, but what about seeking feedback?
When was the last the time you asked your boss, employees, customers, and even your family members, “How am I doing? What could I be doing better?”
Never assume that people will let you know if there’s something they’d like to see you do better. Sometimes people are afraid to share feedback because when they’ve done so in the past, the recipient has gotten defensive or angry. Other times, it’s just easier for people to ignore problems or move on. Think about the last time you went to a restaurant, had a bad experience, and vowed never to go back. Did you tell the owner so that he or she would have the opportunity to do better, or did you just walk away?
Feedback is the foundation of performance improvement and great relationships. So this week, make it a point to seek feedback from others. Ask for it sincerely and respond appropriately when you get it. Don’t quibble, argue, or get defensive. Just say “Thank you for letting me know.” If the feedback is unclear, ask for examples or clarification. Remember, when it comes to feedback, what you don’t know CAN hurt you.