Giving constructive feedback? Pt 2

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How do you approach giving someone constructive feedback? Pt 2

Constructive feedback can be challenging, please ensure you have read Pt 1 as well as this edition.  When it comes to giving constructive feedback do you take a gently does it approach?  This can come across as more caring and certainly not confrontational however, you also need to ensure you are clear.  You don’t want to confuse the poor person.

I heard Oprah speaking about the first time she fired a staff member.  She said that she explained it so slowly and kindly that at the end of the meeting (2 hours later…) the person was not aware that they had been fired.  Uh oh!  You need to ensure that they get your feedback.

Do you worry about how they will take it, get all messed up and then it becomes all about you?  This can be traumatic for the person providing the feedback as you are racked with assumption, assuming the worst before you have even started a conversation.

Particularly if the feedback is not positive, if you need to address a problem, or something very challenging like terminate some ones employment.  In any conversation the moment we begin assuming, and filling in the gaps we are headed for trouble.

The other problem here is how we respond in situations when we are highly emotional.  Our brains virtually switch off and we can behave erratically or irrationally.

It is important that as soon as you notice you are assuming the worst or even assuming at all, you need to stop yourself.  This will only heighten your stress levels and anxiety.  Besides, an important note, this is not about you.

Effective communication should always be aimed at the receiver – how will they best receive this message.  So calm down and stop assuming!

Do you think about it from their perspective, get into their shoes and deal with it with warmth and respect?  In my experience I have found this to be the most effective way of approaching feedback.

The moment you approach feedback from the receivers perspective you are on the right track.  You are then able to ensure your communication is tailored for them.  It is also important to be respectful and not confrontational.

Despite how serious the breach has been or the issue is at hand, there is no need to disrespect.  When you approach difficult conversations with clarity, warmth and respect you are creating the best possible environment for effective communication.
If you need a better solution to giving feedback contact us at to discuss how we can assist you.

When you understand your own needs as a Communicator and can work out the needs of others giving and receiving feedback becomes so much easier and more successful for everyone involved.  Check out our blue print for effective communication as a good starting point.  Join our community and you will be able to download it it for free.

If you have found this helpful, please share it with someone you think will benefit also.


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Until next time, Care, Connect and be a Courageous Communicator.  Let’s change the world we live in one conversation at a time.


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