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The 7 Rules for Giving and Receiving Feedback

Leadership isn’t a title; it’s a state of mind. Whether you’re steering a start-up, school, corporation, government department, local council, or guiding your child through teenage challenges, the ability to give and receive feedback gracefully is your secret weapon.

Feedback is a gift – one that requires both courage to give and humility to receive. As leaders, and indeed parents, we must create spaces where truth can flourish, where our teams (or families) feel safe to share their honest thoughts. There is always real value in this. Often the wisdom of the crowd helps you hear where to focus your attention right now. And one on one feedback is the ‘crack where the light gets in’ (Leonard Cohen).

But here’s the real magic: when we open ourselves to feedback, we model vulnerability. When we are vulnerable, we build trust. When we build trust, we can have tricky conversations and these produce commitment and accountability in ourselves and others.

Feedback to me, as an individual, reminds me that growth isn’t just for others – it’s a lifelong journey and truthfully, we’re all on together.

Remember, feedback isn’t about being right or wrong. It’s about seeing ourselves and our impact through fresh eyes. It’s an invitation to evolve, to become more of who we truly are.

So, next time you’re faced with giving feedback, approach it with kindness and specificity. And when receiving it, listen with an open heart. The most profound leadership moments often happen in these exchanges.

The 7 Rules of Giving and Receiving Feedback will help position you in a constructive place when navigating the feedback dance in your leadership.

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