Challenge of receiving feedbacks April 15th, 2012

Vinod Kumar

feedback1One of the biggest challenge in the corporate world is to receive feedbacks. And I have seen managers do this with less skill and faltering to balance confidence on one side and still offer constructive feedbacks. Any feedback system has two parts – one who gives the feedback and the other who receives feedbacks. The former cannot be changed or influenced and hence this post is about how we set out a positive perception to receiving the feedbacks. I truly understand that being on the receiving end of feedback is one of the most difficult things to accept. No one is perfect and it is a mere disillusionment of perception that we carry in our minds that we are perfect :) (if you disagree, well here is a classic example then :)).

As you start growing in the organizational ladder it is important to have the very best relationship with your peers, managers and leaders. This is very critical because in case you run into giving your boss a candid feedback, you shouldn’t get intimidated with the situation – just because he/she is your boss. Hence investing upfront time in building a rapport is crucial.

Receive feedbacks like a generous gift that you will richly benefit from. This is a foundation for your own future !!!

I know it is tough to accept everything that is thrown in front of you. But I just want to give you a different dimension / perspective to take it positively and introspect later based on the conversation. I know it is doable, just that we need to be prepared for this. Here are my Top 3 feedbacks accepting tactics:

Accept it

What ever be the feedback, it is critical that you accept it as it comes (unfiltered). Understand someone is making time to give you that feedback. People feel encouraged when they feel you appreciate them without any risk of taking them the wrong way – most importantly without any consequences. Keeping an open mind and receiving doesn’t really hurt.

Don’t jump to conclusions

feedback2The feedbacks are best absorbed without debate. There is no point in arguing and reasoning about what you are being told as it will be counter-productive. If required, ask for details and examples – this makes sure that you are indeed having a open mind and listening to them carefully. Make them feel that you truly and sincerely value their input and are making efforts to improve.

Make an environment where both the parties (giver/seeker) feel there is a value in the discussion.

Act on your feedbacks

As we called out before, receiving feedbacks doesn’t mean you jump onto every thing that is said to you. The art here is to understand, verify (with actions mentioned), internalize the feedback and make the right change where appropriate. You don’t change yourself completely just because you got a feedback.

Being yourself is an identity, don’t make a mess of that.

Final words

If you personally feel getting constructive feedbacks are adding value don’t miss the opportunity to thank the person. Accepting feedbacks and acknowledging encourages the relation you have with the other person. Best part is you are the beneficiary of having such people around.

Constructive feedback is one that enables you to feed-forward in life.

Don’t think I am painting only one side of the coin – remember how you receive and perceive the feedbacks is something within our control and hence the emphasis is on that. Do tell me your perspectives and experiences.

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This entry was posted on Sunday, April 15th, 2012 at 11:28 and is filed under Personal, Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

14 Responses to “Challenge of receiving feedbacks”

  1. SIJIN KUMAR says:

    Dear Vinod,
    I’ve really enjoyed your articles so far…
    Thank you for your time and expertise.
    I got a great opportunity to meet you there in
    Teched2012@Bangalore.And also thanks for the snap with me.


  2. Phani says:

    Hi Vinod,

    I am seeing a different personality in you since last 3 posts that you wrote (the ones which I closely followed). I feel you are a techie person who can peel out the interals of SQL Server and convey the details in such a crisp manner and it has got bundled with a typical personnel manager rather I can put it as a personality development advisor. What is amazing to see is the way how you are able to hit both in tandem. I admire to have people like you around.


    • Vinod Kumar says:

      Haha, Thanks Phani. Glad to hear you are liking the same. Yes, these are some hidden thoughts that I felt blogging can bring out of me !!! hope these are making an interesting read.

  3. Anuraj says:

    Nice article Vinod. But sometimes even if ask for feedback, some managers reluctant to give :)

  4. SARAVANAN says:

    Thanks Vinod. I agree on your points. It will be good if the person gives the feedback understand the big responsibily and takes some time , provides fair one.

  5. manasdash says:

    First of all let me thank you for all the feedback I have got from you for my way of working and writing. Also this is a nice post and “acceptance” is the key as you told with working on what is good for us. Last week only I had a one to one with my manager and I told him to give me my feedback first before telling me about my achievements and he was very happy and gave me some great feedback for which I am thankful to him and I am going to work on those things. Like so many other things “FEEDBACK” also works as a great source of inspiration for me (from whom ever I got, younger or elder)

    • Vinod Kumar says:

      Manas – It really doesnt matter where and from whom the feedbacks come. The intentions are more important than the age factor. Having a positive outlook helps. Glad to hear you are on the right direction and you surely do have a positive attitude from what I have seen for you :). Cheers.

  6. Great post.I really enjoyed this post. :)

  7. Well articulated! Loved it.

    The flip side of providing feedback is to not just bring up issues and concerns but also have a potential solution and way forward, which will make it easy to receive feedback. Perhaps this is a topic you can write on as a separate post?

    • Vinod Kumar says:

      I am with you Srini. The Feedforward is something I have read at multiple places and the irony is that our system always likes the feedback model :). Sure, will write on that too someday.

      Thanks for your note :).

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