Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Feedback is a great way of improving your skills, but if you are like me it can hurt ! One way of lessoning the pain is making it fun and in a team environment - then everyone is in the same boat.
At your next team meeting get everyone to think about what skill they would like to develop e.g listening, controlling temper, being creative, presenting etc
Then get them to write that at the top of the piece of paper. Then allow about 15 minutes for people to mix. What they must do is introduce themselves to their colleagues by saying "I would like to be a better listener (for example), can you give me an idea to help me ?" They thank the person and reciprocate with advice for their colleagues area of development, then go and talk to someone else. In 15 mins people should be able to get round 7/8 people if you have a smaller group ask for a couple of ideas. A prize can be given for the person who gets the most ideas. One rule to remember - no feedback can be given about the past - only ideas for the future - this must be stressed. Why? Well we cannot change the past but we can be part of moulding the future.
Why do this ? Well as a leader of people you are a coach and coaching is all about getting feedback - you can also use this technique to get ideas of how to solve individual work problems or ideas of how to improve systems, communication etc. Remember people love ideas BUT LOVE TO GIVE IDEAS ! Two outcomes you are looking for - to learn as much as you can but also for people to help each other as much as they can

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