Feedback is an important component of growth, both personally and professionally. But sometimes it can be tough to take, especially if you fundamentally disagree with what you are hearing. However, we recommend you avoid the temptation to react emotionally, and instead listen and take stock so that you can have meaningful conversations that help you grow.
It’s easy to react emotionally to feedback—you may feel offended, angry, hurt or defensive—but an emotional outburst won’t move the conversation forward. For example, if someone tells you they think you are egotistical, and you then get angry, deny that it’s true and storm off, you’ve not only shut down the opportunity to have a meaningful conversation, you’ve also confirmed the person’s assertion.
Listen to what the person is saying to you and take stock. Perhaps you have been projecting something without realizing it. Or maybe the other person misinterpreted something you said or did. Examine your interactions, solicit additional feedback if necessary and ask for specific examples.
Once you have taken time to reflect and take stock, circle back. Acknowledge that you heard the feedback. Discuss your thoughts, and why you either agree or disagree. You may learn something that can help you grow or change certain behaviors. Alternatively, the other person may find they have misjudged you. Either way, you can work to resolve the situation together after having had meaningful conversations that moved things forward in a positive manner.
If you struggle with giving or receiving feedback, reach out and we’ll come up with a plan to help.