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Feedback is an objective message about behaviour or an activity, recognising and reinforcing something well done or offering suggestions about how to do something better. It is not necessarily negative and is not always one way. It should never be an opportunity for a personal attack on someone’s character or personality.
It can be given:
It can be received from any of those directions above and from clients, customers or beneficiaries.
It can help to improve:
It can be undertaken in a formal (that is in performance reviews or supervision meetings) or informal setting (after an activity or the completion of an event or piece of work).
- behaviour NOT personality
- evidence NOT assumption
- description NOT value judgments
- specifics NOT generalities
- discussion NOT telling
- information NOT gossip
'EEC' is a method of giving feedback where:
E = Evidence, example about the person’s BEHAVIOUR or ACTIONS not about their PERSONALITY
E = Effect of the behaviour where you describe in non-emotional terms what specific effect the person’s action had on you, people or a situation.
C = Change – where you help the person decide on the required changes. When the cause of negative feedback is inappropriate behaviour, the person must want and learn how to change it. At this stage you should encourage them to generate their own solutions. Offer guidance and discuss options, but don’t impose your ideas.
EXAMPLE: “John, on the last two mornings you have arrived 15 minutes late for work”
EFFECT: “This has led to me and the rest of the team having to delay our early morning meeting and has thrown out our schedule for the rest of the day. I am extremely annoyed about this”.
CHANGE: “We need to agree the ways that you will ensure that you arrive at work on time in the future. What ideas do you have?”
EXAMPLE: “John, since I last spoke to you about your timekeeping, you have arrived consistently early for work.”
EFFECT: “This has meant that we have been able to start our meetings on time. I am very pleased about this. Keep it up.”
NO CHANGE NEEDED
Everyone receives feedback from others from time to time. It is a key opportunity to learn from earlier events and actions - what went well or not so well - and is an important part of our development and an opportunity to learn.
Some tips on how to receive feedback:
It is easy to be defensive when someone gives you negative feedback, when someone complains or challenges you.
Rather than pausing to let the feedback or message sink in, people often rush in to contradict the speaker or justify your position. This reaction can weaken your ability to listen and can change a conversation into a conflict.
A method that can help you avoid acting defensively is PAC where:
P = demonstrate patience, pause
A = ask at least one question to clarify the situation
C = confirm that you have understood the speaker accurately
… then respond.
Using 'PAC' gives you time to understand what the issue is, to reflect on the feedback and to think through your response.
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