4 Facets Of Giving Feedback
12 December 2022
How To Give Feedback
Insights From 'Trillion Dollar Coach' by Alan Eagle, Eric Schmidt, And Jonathan Rosenberg
Bill Campbell was honest to a fault.
If he didn’t like something you did, he would tell you.
As soon as possible, in as colorful language as possible, focused on the exact thing he didn’t like – nothing else.
And never in front of an audience.
Set aside the language and you have a perfect recipe for giving feedback.
Pick one issue at a time. Don’t wait.
Being timely is especially important.
You want to strike while the proverbial iron is hot.
If you wait for the annual or six-monthly performance review, it may be too late.
That one-off incident may by now have become a habit.
Or, it may have snowballed into something even bigger and more unmanageable.
Then, focus on specifics. Don’t be vague.
Tell them exactly what didn’t work and why.
This would also be a good time of suggesting better ways of doing the same thing.
You don’t want to say, “I didn’t like your report.”
Instead, give them something to work on: “You haven’t given data to prop up the suggestions made on Page 8.” Or, “You came unprepared for the meeting Tuesday. It makes the entire team look bad.”
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Lastly, no matter how much Campbell disapproved of someone’s action, he would never embarrass them in public – even if he hauled them over the coals in private.
Google Cloud CEO, Diane Greene, says Campbell taught her to always -- and only -- praise in public.
“You can always find something.”
That’s a Campbell lesson worth repeating – when something is good, tell people.
It’s not enough to only give constructive feedback.
People need to be complimented as well.
And if it’s remotely negative, make sure you find a private space to do it.