Resist the urge to begin with easy but trivial matters. Are you “bike-shedding” your feedback? Bike-shedding refers to the act of spending lots of time on unimportant details while leaving crucial matters unattended. The term traces back to 1955 article in The Economist by C. Northcote Parkinson, a British naval historian and author. “Parkinson’s Law of Triviality” states that people tend to focus on things that are trivial but easy rather than those that are important and hard. To make his point, Parkinson described a fictitious committee overseeing plans for a nuclear… Read More
If you dislike workplace jargon but find yourself using it anyways, you’re not alone. A recent survey by American Express found that 88% of respondents said they use jargon without understanding it, and 64% reported using words and terms like this “multiple times” weekly. Curious, I polled my LinkedIN network about the words or phrases they wish they could eliminate from the workplace. Based on their responses, here is the 2017 Workplace Jargon blacklist:
Honest feedback is a gift. Here’s how you can start delivering it. Giving transparent feedback is a challenge for most people. Want to know what radically transparent feedback looks like? Here’s an actual email sent to Ray Dalio, the founder of Bridgewater Associates, by an employee named Jim Haskel: Ray – You deserve a “D-” for your performance today in the meeting. You did not prepare at all, because there is no way you could have and been that disorganized. In the future, I/we would ask you to take some… Read More
Feedforward is a unique approach to giving feedback that improves performance, boosts productivity, and keeps teams on track. Unlike traditional feedback, feedforward is timely, continuous, and focused on development – a refreshing change from the typical feedback fare that rarely makes a positive difference or offers much insight about how work gets done.
Few people like hearing bad news about themselves. Getting a tough performance review or being called out for a mistake challenges our status and triggers feelings of shame, frustration, and helplessness. Negative feedback floods the brain with stress-inducing hormones that raise our threat awareness and causes a momentary loss of executive functioning. If an unfavorable report makes you think you’ve lost your mind, it’s probably because you have. But before we write off the criticisms we receive from bosses and friends, here’s the surprising part about negative feedback: It might actually be… Read More
Dynamic feedback drives creative thinking among teams Pixar is one of the most successful movie studios in Hollywood. Over the years, it has collected more than twenty Academy Awards for hits like Toy Story, The Incredibles, and Finding Nemo. Its last eight films have grossed more than $500 million worldwide. The memorable characters and storylines that Pixar dreams up have delighted moviegoers of all ages. But behind all of the box office magic is an active feedback system that’s built on candor, communication, and a surprising openness to other people’s ideas. Creating full-length… Read More
This is a book about giving feedback, but not the kind you’ve come to know and loathe. Whether it’s the feedback we give to employees and co-workers, teachers and students, or family and friends, we have a nagging suspicion that it’s ultimately going to fail. And you know what? We’re right. According to Columbia University psychologist Kevin Ochsner, people apply just 30% of the feedback they receive. The rest is ignored, rejected, stonewalled, or mangled the moment it arrives. Even if they don’t dread feedback, the vast majority of people just aren’t… Read More