How Do I Give and Receive Feedback?

Keep feedback short, brief and clean.

Summary
Transcript

Celeste Headlee, author of “We Need to Talk: How to Have Conversations That Matter,” shares what leaders must keep in mind when providing feedback.

“Feedback is one of the most complicated conversations you can have,” explains Celeste. “When you're being offered help or advice or feedback, even if you've requested it, [you] don't like it.”

Watch the video to hear Celeste’s tips for giving feedback.

Feedback is one of the most complicated conversations you can have. When you're having to offer feedback, keep in mind that, OK, conversation is good and healthy for human beings in pretty much every situation. They're good for you neurologically, physiologically, and emotionally. There's only two exceptions. One is when there's any kind of hostility present, which makes sense. Right? But the other one is when you're being offered help or advice or feedback, even if you've requested it, we don't like it.

You kind of have to keep that in mind when you're giving the feedback. Keep it to the point. Don't run on, and on, and on, and start describing all these cases. Keep it direct, which means keep it short. Don't pile on. Don't repeat yourself and don't pile on. Choose one or two priorities. "Here's a couple of things I noticed," and then you just say what they are. You put no psychological babble in there about why you think the person is doing that. You just keep it short, and brief, and clean. Then if they ask more questions, answer them.

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