Thursday, April 09, 2015

A coach approach feedback model

Do you have difficulty sharing feedback or input with others? Maybe you're trying to share a helpful hint, and it gets taken as criticism. Or perhaps you need to approach someone about an incident and you're not sure how to do it without making matters worse. Wouldn't it be nice if there were a model for objective dialogue and conversation?

One of the things I learned from my last coaching class on leading & managing was a model for feedback that I think is pretty good. You share how you saw things and how it either made you feel or made others feel or react, and during the course of the conversation you make sure to check with the other party to see that your understanding is valid and/or correct.

Here is what it looks like:

1. Observe behavior
2. Assign meaning to the behavior
3. Decide about sharing

4. Describe the situation to the person (and check for shared understanding)
5. Describe the behavior to the person (and check for shared understanding)
6. Describe the perceived impact (and check for shared understanding)

7. Determine next steps and new actions based on shared understanding

REMEMBER: Not all (or even most) feedback is "negative."

So, if you've ever had trouble getting a message across or providing input/feedback, why not give this coach approach a try. Rather than stating your observations as fact, you can actually listen and get at the heart of situations - which will help you build better relationships, and ultimately make for a better work (or home) environment. I know I'm going to try it.