4 Facets Of Giving Feedback

12 December 2022

[Video Transcript]  

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.

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