In my last post I listed reasons why as executive leaders we’re resistant to seeking feedback. To overcome this resistance, it’s best to think about what we gain. Here are a few reasons feedback is the gift that keeps on giving:
Reason #1: It immediately makes you a more credible leader: The key to effective leadership is authenticity, which includes large portions of leader vulnerability and mutual trust. By asking your employees how you can be a more effective leader automatically makes you a more effective leader. That’s a neat trick! And rather than making you appear weak, as some leaders fear, asking for feedback makes you appear strong because you’re leading by example.
Reason #2: You will learn things that will make you better at your job: You will hear things that will make you better at your job. But this requires an open mind and follow through, so be prepared to listen and act.
Reason #3: It often creates a positive ‘trickle down’ effect: Your behaviors and actions are naturally reflected in your employees. This is how company culture works. When you ask your managers for feedback, you may find that some of them, without prompting, will do the same with their direct reports. This level of openness, honesty and trust are hallmarks of any high performing team. When multiple teams are operating in this way, the company’s culture naturally begins to change and improve.
Bonus Reason #4 – Feedback is a gift! Feedback makes you more engaged in your work and makes your work more enjoyable. Who doesn’t want to get better at something so fundamental to who we are as our work?
In my next post, I’ll share tips for how to seek feedback from your colleagues, boss, and your direct reports. Stay tuned.