Feedback can be like that vegetable we don’t like but we know we need it because it is good for us and our growth. (Heavily sighs). Most of us shy away from feedback because it sometimes feels like a personal attack on us. We know exactly how that feels. When receiving feedback, it is important to cultivate the right mindset if not we might miss out on the message.
Feedback is a powerful tool for personal and professional development. It serves as a mirror that reflects our strengths and weaknesses, enabling us to grow, improve, and ultimately excel in our chosen fields.
Feedback is not just criticism or praise; it is a valuable source of information that provides insights into our performance, behaviour, and impact on others. It can come from various sources, including supervisors, peers, subordinates, mentors, and even self-assessment.
Why should you embrace feedback?
We can think of 1 million and one reason why you should embrace feedback but we will give you a couple.
Continuous Learning: Embracing feedback fosters a culture of continuous learning. When we are open to receiving feedback, we are more likely to seek opportunities for skill development and knowledge acquisition.
Enhancing Performance: Feedback provides specific information on how to improve performance. Whether it’s in the workplace or any other professional setting, knowing what to work on can lead to better results.
Self-Awareness: Feedback helps us gain a deeper understanding of ourselves. It highlights our blind spots, biases, and areas where we can improve. This self-awareness is the first step toward personal growth.
Quick Fact: Professionals who actively seek and use feedback are often more successful in their careers. They are better equipped to adapt to changing circumstances and take on new challenges.
Embracing Feedback is not easy, same as learning to eat those vegetables even though they are wonderful for you and your growth but we need them. Here are a couple of ways you can embrace feedback on your professional journey.
Cultivate a Growth Mindset: A growth mindset is the belief that abilities and intelligence can be developed through dedication and hard work. When you have a growth mindset, you view feedback as an opportunity to learn and grow rather than as a threat to your ego.
Seek Feedback Actively: Don’t wait for feedback to come to you; actively seek it out. Ask for feedback from your peers, supervisors, and mentors. Be specific in your requests, focusing on areas where you want to improve.
Be Open and Receptive: When receiving feedback, approach it with an open mind. Listen attentively, ask clarifying questions, and avoid becoming defensive. Remember that feedback is about improvement, not criticism.
Separate the Message from the Messenger: Sometimes, feedback can be delivered in a less-than-ideal manner. Focus on the content of the feedback rather than the delivery. Extract valuable insights from even poorly communicated feedback.
Act on Feedback: The most crucial step is to act on the feedback you receive. Develop a plan for improvement and track your progress. Regularly revisit the feedback to ensure you are making positive changes.
Remember that professional excellence is not a destination but a continuous journey of growth and learning, and feedback is your faithful companion on that journey. So, get that feedback and eat that vegetable! You’d look back and be glad you did.
Written by Olamide Oduola,
Assistant Project Officer/Social Media Support