Actionable feedback is critical in developing leaders

High-performing organizations need high-performing people, and people need feedback to fully develop into high performers.

In our work with financial institutions, we have found that leaders are often unaware of how they are coming across to people and the impact they have on their team.  Even if they are aware of a disconnect between their intentions and people’s reactions, they may be hard-pressed to tell you why.  Addressing these disconnects is crucial for building better leaders, but this can only happen when they are made aware of the things they don’t see, and this requires honest and actionable feedback. 

People consistently tell us that they would rather receive feedback than give it.  Many are not only open to feedback, but they’re starved for it.  Organizations need more people giving feedback in a productive way, but this is an area that can cause great discomfort and actually goes against the culture in some cases.   

Many people have an almost instinctive fear of conflict and are extremely uncomfortable treading where an observation might be viewed as a personal attack.  While it’s true that feedback should be delivered carefully, giving too little feedback deprives the organization of better leaders and greater bench strength.


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