Turn Performance Into a Partnership


Instead of associating performance with power, try a partnership approach for positive and lasting change. You may not like getting feedback, but you can’t deny its importance. Receiving robust feedback is a key driver of performance and leadership effectiveness. And when people ask for feedback, they are generally seen as more effective by their superiors and peers. There’s just one problem: Most of the time, feedback is hierarchical. One person (e.g. the manager) holds the power and directs the process while the other (e.g. the employee) takes cues from the top. When… Read More

Giving Difficult Feedback to Parents


When teachers “bundle” feedback for parents, tough conversations can go much smoother. As educational partners, teachers and parents share responsibility for the success of children. Keeping open lines of communication is essential to maintaining a relationship of transparency and trust. Parents expect and deserve honest feedback about their children’s progress. But when situations call for difficult conversations, teachers can become agitated and apprehensive.

5 Coaching Questions To Build Your Self-Awareness


Ask these questions to create self-awareness about your work, goals and growth. Great coaching starts with mirror holding – the things we say and do to help people see themselves in a whole new light. Instead of telling others how to improve, great coaches ask questions that help others chart their own improvement path. It’s also the key to generating more self-awareness about how you work and develop next-level strengths. Based on the inspiring leaders I wrote about in The Feedback Fix and my own experiences as a leadership coach, here are five must-have question… Read More

How to PREP feedback for success

Before you offer feedback, make sure you PREP first. It’s a simple four-part formula to make your feedback more specific, actionable and clear. And it’s incredibly easy to do, whether you’re offering unsolicited feedback or asked to weigh in on an issue. “PREP” stands for Point, Reason, Explain, & Prompt. And it can be applied virtually anytime and in any situation. Let’s say your boss asks for your thoughts on a new product idea. Instead of offering up a hazy or unfocused praise sandwich, use the PREP method to deliver more specific… Read More

Are you “bike-shedding” your feedback?

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

50 Workplace Phrases We Love to Hate


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:

Giving Feedback That’s Radically Transparent

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

Give Feedforward Like a Fighter Pilot


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.

Too much feedback makes people less effective


Giving too much feedback is counterproductive. People can’t fix what they can’t see. From time to time, it’s our job – as managers, teachers, parents and friends – to see for them. By providing eye-opening feedback, we eliminate some of the tunnel vision that keeps others from recognizing their personal or professional flaws. And while sharing negative feedback can be good news, we need to be particular about how much of it we share at once.

Why Negative Feedback Might Be Good For You


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