How often do you ask those around you for feedback? Are you checking in to see what you’re doing well and what could be improved? This is something that you can easily do in all areas of your life, if you’re open it and open to making changes.
Gratitude Tip: Direct and honest feedback, both positive and negative can be extremely valuable, not only in business but in your personal life as well. Rather than use the term ‘constructive criticism’ which has an inherent negative tone to it, focus on feedback. Feedback is simply how the other person perceives your action or lack of action in some cases. When you ask for feedback, keep an open mind and receive it with gratitude. It takes courage to be honest with someone and give them the feedback that could help them to grow and change.
Where do we ask for feedback? From a business perspective, you can ask your team or people that work for you. Make it a safe conversation and allow them to be honest without fear of repercussions. If you have a boss or manager, don’t wait until the annual review for feedback, find out if you can check in on a monthly or even a weekly basis for areas to improve, or even just for a brainstorming session.
In our personal lives, asking our spouse or partner where they see us on a scale of 1 to 10, as a partner is a great place to start. Jack Canfield taught me this, you ask your spouse every week how you did the week before, and if it’s not a 10, ask them for feedback on how to make it to a 10 the following week. Connect with your children as well, depending on their age. Children are often very wise and very direct, feedback from them can be life-changing.
Our friends and family can also be great sources of feedback. Asking about how we are doing in the relationship, and do they have certain ‘expectations’ of us that we aren’t meeting. I shared about the dangers of having expectations in life in this post, however if someone else has hidden expectations that we aren’t aware of, let them share it (and then share the blog post!).
Ready to ask for feedback? Connect with the person you’d like feedback from and ask if they would be open to sharing honest and appropriate feedback with you. If they agree, ask them a few questions and listen WITHOUT replying. Take notes if you like but it’s not appropriate to defend your actions or explain yourself. Simply accept the feedback and after you’ve had the conversation, decide whether or not to take action. If you ask for feedback and several people give you the same response, it’s likely a valid point and it may be time to change and grow.
Here are a few suggestions for questions to ask:
Business (to a team member or employee)
- In what ways can I be more supportive of you?
- What are my greatest strengths?
- What are my biggest weaknesses?
- If you were in my position, what would you do differently?
Personal (spouse or partner)
- On a scale of 1 to 10, how was I as your partner last week?
- How can I grow from a ___ to a 10?
- Is there something I did or didn’t do that’s bothering you?
- How can I be a better parent?
- What do you like best about our relationship?
- What could I do more of?
- What would you like me to do less of?
- If you were the parent, how would you do things differently?
- Do you feel valued in our friendship?
- What am I taking for granted?
- How can I be a better friend?
- What is most important to you in our relationship?
- Do you have certain expectations that I am not meeting?
These questions are starting points to open a conversation. Remember to be open and to listen with your heart and do your best to leave your emotional reactions out of it. When you ask for feedback, you’re letting yourself be vulnerable. And as Brené Brown puts it, this is the most powerful thing you can do in relationships.
My turn to ask for feedback! I have been writing daily for almost 7 months now. Thank you to all who have been following me for years, months, weeks or simply just a few days. Here are my feedback questions for you, if you receive this via email, please reply directly. You’re welcome to post in the comments as well.
- What type of content do you enjoy most?
- Are there topics you would like to see included?
- Is the length of the blog important to you (i.e. is shorted better?)
- How could I make the content more ‘sharable’?
Thank you! I’m open to your feedback and welcome it.
Today is Day 11 of #40daysofgratitude challenge! Our team of challengers is still going strong, I have been watching all of you on FB every day and it’s absolutely wonderful to see. You can join us at any time! Visit this post for more information on how it works.