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Asking for Feedback

November 3, 2009 Leave a comment

Consistently I hear from people that they don’t get enough feedback from their manager or team regarding their performance. When’s the last time you asked? What’s stopping you from asking now?

1:1s are the easiest and most private way to ask for feedback, but it doesn’t always have to be in a formal setting. Our daily interactions give us plenty of opportunities to ask for input. After meetings or discussions I often like to pull people aside to ask them their thoughts on the content or how I could have structured the interaction better. When I want a larger sampling, I use Rypple. It’s anonymous, which has its pluses and minuses. I’ve had mixed results with internal forums. The feedback, while helpful, has a strong negative bias. People are quick to point out what’s wrong in a situation without providing useful solutions. It has useful for figuring out pain points, both real and perceived.

Who to ask for feedback?
It’s important to reach out to people who have a vested interest in your development. Close friends may bias positive, as to not hurt your feelings. I find that team members, people on adjoining projects and managers give the best feedback. They have the most to gain from you performing well.

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