In a professional setup, you must have heard so many times that you need feedback to improve yourself, your action or your work that you now see it as a cliched argument. Feedback indeed is one of the most difficult and delicate processes, more so if a group is involved. But does it really work the way we have been hearing for so long?

The answer is ‘Yes’ it does, but the individual, group or even organization needs to classify the feedback and then qualify them to make it useful. Not every feedback is the same, so you need to learn the ‘Art of receiving feedback‘ to make full use of it. For those wanting to hone their skills in giving feedback. The art of giving feedback is already converted.

It is easy to hurt people with criticism, but false compliments are sometimes more harmful. Compliments often make people complacent, while criticism damages our self-esteem and can lead us to make unwise choices. The feedback is what helps us improve.

How to receive feedback that works for you?

The one-dimensional question ‘What did you find good, what did you find bad?’ is therefore not necessarily helpful. In terms of what can be learned from feedback, it is better to ask yourself ‘What can I do with this criticism?’ In other words, see what can stay as it is, and what needs to change(but may have been good up till now).

It is not only about establishing what has not succeeded, but it is also about deciding whether and how to react. The model will help you to categorize the feedback you receive in order to clearly establish a plan of action.

It is also important to ask yourself honestly: ‘Which success or failure was in fact due to luck?’ Were you the winner of a match because the ball found its way into the net purely by chance? Do you really deserve this compliment?

  • Pay attention to your thoughts, because they become words.
  • Pay attention to your words, because they become actions.
  • Pay attention to your actions, because they become habits.
  • Pay attention to your habits, because they become your character. Pay attention to your character, because it is your fate.

The Feedback Matrix

The Feedback Matrix
The Feedback Matrix

Arrange the feedback you have received in the matrix. What advice do you want to follow?

Which criticisms prompt you to take action? Which suggestions can you ignore?

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