How Am I Doing?

I got the most amazing, and unsolicited, feedback the other day on my monthly Book Club call. And by “amazing,” I mean complimentary, but also honest and forthright. My friend, Jack, said, “I love Beth’s daily posts. Her blog is only one of two I read every day along with Seth Godin’s. I find her writing inspirational. I don’t always agree with her, and when I don’t, I tell her so.” I love all of the comments Jack shares with me, especially when he pushes back. He keeps me on my toes.

Feedback is a critical component of improving. If we don’t know what we are doing wrong, how can we make changes? And to think we don’t need improvement at all is simply head-in-the-sand thinking. But feedback can be really painful to hear, especially if we are not prepared for it. So how do we get better at hearing this feedback?

Most importantly, don’t take it personally. I know this sounds impossible, but don’t see it as an attack. Try to find the value from this feedback so you can improve. The best way to not feel an affront is to ask for the feedback yourself. “Where can I improve?” Remember, just the fact that you are asking for this feedback, sets you apart from the rest. And even just one really great piece of feedback will help you become better—and isn’t that what we are all shooting for anyway?



P.S. Sheila Heen, author of Thanks for the Feedback: The Science and Art of Receiving Feedback Well, said, “People who go out and solicit negative feedback — meaning they aren’t just fishing for compliments — report higher satisfaction.”

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