Day 5: Share your tips on offering and receiving feedback at work and like someone's post you agree with

Today’s task is all about sharing your valuable insights on offering and receiving feedback at work.

Here’s how to complete this task:

  1. Reflect on your experiences: Take a moment to think about your experiences with feedback at work. What has worked well for you? What hasn’t? What are some things you’d like to improve on?
  2. Share your tips: Once you’ve reflected on your experiences, share your tips and strategies for effective feedback exchange. This could include tips on how to give constructive criticism, how to accept feedback gracefully, or how to navigate feedback conversations successfully.
  3. Engage with the community: Take some time to read through the other posts in the community. Like posts that resonate with your own experiences and perspectives. Share your thoughts and insights in the comments.
  4. Learn from others: Feedback is a two-way street. By engaging with the community, you can learn from others and expand your knowledge on navigating feedback conversations successfully.

Why complete this task?

  • Contribute to a collaborative community: By participating in this task, you can contribute to building a community of people who are passionate about learning and growing.
  • Gain valuable insights from fellow professionals: You can learn from the experiences of other professionals who have been through the same challenges you’re facing.
  • Expand your knowledge on how to navigate feedback conversations successfully: You can learn how to give and receive feedback in a way that is constructive and helpful.
3 Likes

Giving positive feedback is always nice and easy but negative or some criticism is the hard part.
If I have to give any negative feedback I’m always coming up with a positive thing first. I personally think it’s never a good start to open up with a negative topic in a conversation.

When giving feedback, it’s always nice to have examples of things that happened. You do not want to be in a pickle where he asks “can you give an example? I never noticed?” and you being stuck there without being able to give an example.

Receiving negative feedback can be frustrating. So at the point when somebody gives you negative or constructive feedback; don’t go all defensive mode ‘but this guy that and this’ … . Think about it, take it in and put yourself in somebody his shoes and try to think of why you received this feedback. Then improve on it! Ending the conversation with like ‘thanks for the feedback I appreciate it and I’ll try to improve on it’ is always a good thing to say. Basically if you can say this, it means you are calm and open towards feedback.

Looking forward to other people tips & tricks!

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At work, I have received both positive and negative feedback. I will say definitely it’s not easy to digest negative feedback, but I have started to take it lightly, compared to when I started my career in 2016 it was tough to accept it positively. Usually, I ask my developers, how I can improve my test cases/ test coverage since currently I am the only sr QA here. At my previous remote job, my sr QA used to review my automation code and give me reviews on how to write good automation code, which was really helpful for me and helped me to improve my coding style.

I got the opportunity to mentor one of my Jr QA, I taught her how to write test cases properly, and how to get proper feedback from end-user during UAT. I taught her positively by saying that improving such skill sets will be good for her career in the long run and hence she landed a really good job in Dhaka in one of the top-notch IT companies.

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In giving and receiving feedback I have had to learn to not take it personally. That has been a big lesson for me. Sometimes I still fail at that.
I am a non-confrontational person, so the feedback I give is factual: These are my steps and this is the error for example. I find this approach has worked for me in work, and in my personal life too.
I think understanding different personalities and how other people react/work/are helps a lot in giving and receiving feedback.
The point is to fix the problem, and not hurt the person. Some people can take harsh words, and others not. There has to be a balance.

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I feel that it’s not just about the one moment of giving or receiving a feedback. To me, a necessary prerequisite to being able to give and receive negative feedback is an environment of trust and psychological safety in the team and company.

And that is quite hard to build.

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Dan North gave a good talk on giving feedback well: Making a Sandwich: Effective Feedback Techniques

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This is so nicely explained. And I agree with you @baysha , if you trust your colleagues negative feedback is actually an advice! :smiling_face:

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My mental health has been iffy until recently (please, take care of yourselves!), so feedback has been a challenge for me. My boss is wonderful about offering constructive feedback, but I still would, on some days, feel like even a small change was a personal attack. That’s on me, and I’m getting better at it.

I like feedback that is focused on one issue at a time: this means, for a topic I’m not familiar with, I revisit it many times, making improvements and corrections each time. We use Azure, so I can leave a test in the ‘design’ stage as long as it needs.
Exploratory testing bring up many questions, even in an area I’m familiar with, and those give me practice in asking questions - which to me is a part of getting feedback.

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Hello. I personaly haven’t worked yet as a QA recently. I’m searching for an entry role at this time. However, i read interesting responses on this topic by others. In my opinion a negative feedback must be followed by a reason of why that so that to be able to learn my your mistakes.

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Probably the biggest thing I can suggest when it comes to receiving feedback is to remember that the goal is to improve your work. It can be hard to receive negative feedback: my method when I receive any feedback (but particularly negative) is to stay polite, try to stay emotionally detached, and spend a few days thinking through the feedback looking for the core problem that you can work on and ways you can work on the problem that will be effective for you.

As an example, last year I received feedback that I was forgetting too many important dates/meetings/tasks (I knew I’d been rather scatterbrained in the month after I had covid, but hadn’t realized it had become as bad as it had). I spent several days researching ways I could improve my self-organization before starting to try different methods. I think I have a handle on the issue now.

As far as giving feedback goes, it helps to be specific and focus on the issue, not the person (it’s also a lot easier to receive feedback that’s specific and focused on the issue rather than the person).

3 Likes

As someone mentioned, I think when we receive feedback we must be polity and think that we are a part of a team and remember that we have one goal, to ensure quality and make a good product and we shouldn’t take it personally.

Great Topic for Day5

Insights of Offering and Receiving Feedback at Work

Feedback as the name indicates is a two-way loop that is an essential part of any organization’s strategy that helps to create a culture of continuous improvement and provides employees with actionable feedback that can help increase morale and engagement.

While it can create an atmosphere of trust, respect, and openness which helps to foster better collaboration between colleagues if it’s constructive. If it isn’t it is taken as a personal assault or grudge.

I compare managers or people who do this effectively to good surgeons or nurses. Because just as a surgeon injects a syringe without inflicting any pain or making the patient realize the slightest of inconvenience, a good manager gives feedback in a constructive or actionable way without hurting the individual and focusing on the event.

I drove this analogy because as humans we are creatures of emotion much more than creatures of logic. We feel joyful and ecstatic when positive feedback is presented to us and get annoyed to the core when something slightly negative happens. I can’t be modest at this juncture. I’m super sensitive and vulnerable too. It takes a lot of time for me to get normal.

I had a lot of trouble too and have it even now while accepting any kind of feedback be it positive or negative. When a person gives me positive feedback I constantly keep asking myself if it’s true and if it’s negative I get into a zone and take my time to reflect and recover.

In one of my workplaces or experience not getting timely feedback made me suffer. I wasn’t even informed of it in the first place. Being an early comer to the office I got hold of my manager’s diary and saw the feedback against me which was not true to some extent. I could not confront them because he would flare up the matter. But I wrote it down as n area for improvement took 10 days of leave and quit the organization because I knew nothing was going to change. This experience created trust issues for me. I could never trust anyone and I became overcautious and watchful of everything I was doing or did.

I read two books which changed my mind and thoughts. So I’m mentioning them here

  1. Crucial Conversations
  2. What did you Say? The Art of Giving and Receiving Feedback by Gerald Weinberg
    What Did You Say? The… by Gerald M. Weinberg [PDF/iPad/Kindle]

I also did specific courses related to how feedback should be given from Linkedin to learn or understand about it.

The fundamental thing I have understood was the tone of your voice has a lot of impact. The words you choose to convey or express is the next one.

So this was the part about me accepting feedback and learnings from it.

Now when it came to implementing them or giving feedback to my reportee’s I first created a safe environment or space which made them trust or value me. This made things easy for me on most occasions.

I have frequent check-ins with them and give feedback on a regular basis rather than dumping it all at once. I followed the 10 % rule which was a great success. I displayed empathy and genuinely showed interest in their problems which convinced them or make them take those actions for themselves. I practised whatever I preached. So it was easy.

I had also had cases where some people were hard nuts and it was difficult. In those cases, I tried taking the help of my managers and other folks at the senior level to handle the situation.

In addition, two models of feedback that you can follow to improve your Feedback conversations

  1. BOFF Model: Behavior, Outcome, Feeling, and Future.
  2. EOAC Model:: Expectation, Observation, Assessments, and Consequences.
    3.SBI Model -Situation Behaviour Impact

Read about these to see how you can adapt them to your context.

So with all of this, I gradually learnt to accept things as they are and strive to make corrections.

I cannot suggest tips or recommendations because I believe not everything that works for me has to be for the other person and vice versa but I’m open to learning anything good that I’m unaware of or I do not know.

4 Likes

In my experience, giving positive feedback is easier than negative. But I would say, we often forget to do it. So many retrospectives are full of the improvements to be made, and not enough of the “what went well”. Be cogent of the positive and seek opportunities to praise your colleagues, friends, family, everyone! It’s a joy to do, once you get over the awkwardness. It also makes it far easier when it comes to giving negative feedback or criticism.

When giving negative feedback, try to focus on the behaviour, not the person. Be polite, specific, and have examples. Otherwise it can feel like an attack, and fail to have the intended consequence.

And yeah, feedback sandwiches are a great way of communicating feedback, Good/Bad/Good.

When receiving negative feedback, try to take a breath before reacting. Really hear what the person is saying, examine it and try take the emotion out of it if you can. It can be really hard, especially if the person delivery the feedback didn’t do it well. But you’ve got this, you’re awesome :slight_smile:

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My organization uses a feedback framework that’s made receiving both positive and negative feedback easier to accept and discuss. Management is expected to provide feedback early and often, so you’re not blindsided during an annual review. This means that I’m told regularly when I’m doing a good job or improving in a weak area. Folks at work are generally good verbal communicators, so feedback and discussions between co-workers tend to go well.

We have a pair of senior devs that are harder to communicate with. I haven’t found a method that wouldn’t add to the tension, so I tend to avoid working with them when I can. My biggest fear in my job search is that I’ll change organizations and find that the entire new dev team has personalities like the two men that I avoid.

Ha ha so true w all have people like that in our teams.

Been very interesting to read the responses to this thread - clearly some themes appearing when it comes to feedback!

I started a new job recently, and following some coaching I’d identified that I’m a really praise driven person, I don’t mind constructive criticism, but thrive off praise (one of the many reasons why stay at home parenthood wasn’t for me - kids never say well done!!)
So on my first conversation with my managers I made it clear that praise (sincere praise) was how I derived value from my work and feeling valuable was a huge part of whether I liked a particular job or not. It made a huge difference to me, and helped my managers know how to get the best out of me too - so don’t be afraid to ask for feedback and especially praise if thats how you work! 🫸🫷
My other thing is “glue” work - praising people and making sure they get recognition (financial if possible) for all the unsung hero stuff that a lot of others don’t always notice. If someone has done something that helps you out - make sure its called out (in private or publicly, however they like to be praised). You both get that lovely dopamine hit and are both more likely to help each other in future. :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:

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My main learnings around feedback is that you definitely offer it, you don’t give it. Jerry Weinberg talks about this. It has to , 100%, be a two way communication. If it’s not, you might believe your ‘given’ some feedback, but the other person hasn’t digested any of it at all. And then if they do the same thing again, you will be like, I’ve given you this feedback before, but you didn’t.

The other important aspect is time and place. There’s a video by Simon Sinek who talks about giving his friend some criticism (I can’t find it). They were performing a show, and it was awful he says, and after the show they asked him what he thought. Bare in mind, they are high on adrenaline right now, offering them your feedback now will kill their high, instead he says don’t lie, say something that is true, I think he says "it was great to see you on the stage’. This is true. Then the next day he contacted them to offer his feedback.

I’ve seen this exact scenario play out at conferences, it’s one of the reasons I stopped QnA at physical TestBash conferences.

3 Likes

I an quite modest with receiving feedback.

On the subject of receiving constructive (or not so constructive) feedback or disagreement:

Just take a breath and stay silent for a second or two! Sometimes getting feedback, especially on a closely held belief, can feel like an attack. Often it’s based on a misunderstanding.

In cases of disagreement, try to bring the situation and decisions back to first principles: “What do we know for sure is true or is very likely to be true based on observations?”

Instead of countering with statements, try to “find the bottom” by asking questions and surfacing all of the assumptions made by parties that have informed their decision making process.

Probably there is a happy path, supported by data, that is the solution :slight_smile:

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I really like the model of nonviolent communication and I try to use it in my personal and professional life.

I often forget that even positive feedback should be specific, so we end up with something like “Good job!” which is not really satisfying.

As someone said here, constructive feedback should focus on the process/behaviour, not the person. It is hard for me when I get “negative” feedback that is too personal. But I try to say “thank you” and chew on it privately and take something away from it. I remind myself that the feedback is for my improvement and to help me progress.

So when the roles are reversed, I try to give feedback that is timely, specific, factual and focused on behaviour. And even when I am the one giving feedback, after I have poured my heart out, I listen, listen, listen.

And very important for me is the intention with which I give feedback. Is it to improve things or to blame someone?

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