How to give feedback (or write a thank-you note)

by Brian Brittain on April 12, 2019


Part of being a leader is being a coach. Part of being a coach is giving feedback. Part of giving feedback is commenting on behaviours that you see as being effective and useful that you have observed in the other, whether a peer, direct, skip level or your boss.

I thought this short article did a great job of explaining why it is very important to be precise and detailed regarding feedback, and not vague and general. For example, it is NOT helpful to tell someone “you are a good communicator”. But it is very helpful to explain what exactly about their style of communication (how they listen, how they tell a story, how they break down and explain a complex subject, etc.) you and others really appreciate.

This short piece below from the School of Life has some healthy hints.
School Of Life | 1st November 2018
“Praise works best the more specific it can be. We know this in love; the more a partner can say what it is they appreciate about us, the more real their affection can feel. It is when they’ve studied the shape of our fingers, when they’ve recognized the quirks of our character that the praise starts to count. The person who has given a dinner party or sent us a present is no different. They too hunger for praise in its specific rather than general forms. We don’t have to be great artists to send effective thank you notes: we just need to locate and hold on tightly to two or three highly detailed reasons for our gratitude” (711 words)
School Of Life | 1st November 2018

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