The power of Feedback for your professional (and personal) evolution
Whether for professional use or even in life, Feedback is a powerful method to evolve quickly. Many who come from their country of origin and seek an opportunity in Japan (or even leverage their professional careers) tend to have a lot of barriers, either by language, culture, or adaptation in the work environment. For the vast majority, having an interview or starting a new project can be intimidating (as we are afraid to hear negative criticism or fail).
However, in search of improving your performance, asking for Feedback will be the best starting point. I personally have already participated in several interviews, whether for work or presenting a proposal to clients. Like everything, we don't always have a positive answer, however, I always try to take the opportunity to ask where (and sometimes how) to improve. It is a matter of opportunity. But logically, both to give and to ask for Feedback, requires some care in order to get the best out of the opportunity.
Therefore, we prepared some points that serve both to expose your opinion in a constructive way and to ask, avoiding risks and frustrations.
Be an Opportunist and know the right moment
First of all, there are ideal moments for good feedback. For example, after a job interview, regardless of the result that you think you had, at the end of the interview it is one of the moments where you can ask the interviewer:
“Can I ask you where I can improve” - Explain your reasons, such as for example “I want to improve my performance and I would like to know your professional opinion and honesty, where I can grow” Exposing your points and asking for a professional and constructive answer is the key to receiving constructive Feedback.
But is that just for someone who is asking for feedback? No! Think that from the interviewer's perspective, it is an important opportunity to help and understand the interviewee's points of difficulty. The rule can be applied to everything, from business meetings, friendships, relationships, knowing the right time is essential.
Choose the right questions/answers
Thinking before you speak is extremely important. Of course, we have a lot to ask or say, however, questions created with quality, tend to generate quality answers. Like everything else, knowing how to choose the points you seek to understand is important for both sides.
Be professional and polite when exposing or defending your points
As it is a time when both sides tend to “let their guard down”, the minimum of respect and professionalism is necessary. Not all people know how to express themselves, but in a professional environment, for example, this is something theoretically basic and we should always use it. Defending the points in a clear, polite, and respectful way generates quality in the conversation and good results.
Find the balance between Criticism (negative points) and Praise (positive points)
Here the keyword is Balance. Like everything, we have positive and negative points and in Feedback, it is important to understand both sides equally. Want a tip? Expose 3 points (negative) which can be improved and 3 points (positive) that favor you. With this balance, both the quality of the response and the spirits of those who are asking for feedback tend to be more beneficial.
Be direct, objective, and honest but keep critism private
Just to reinforce, clarity, get to the point and honesty are positive for any dialogue. Feedback would be no different. The opportunity we have during this conversation is something that will considerably influence both sides. Be transparent and take advantage of Feedback wisely. A very common mistake that occurs is to ask for Feedback collectively. With this, it tends to lose the quality of each answer because many of them can be influenced by others. Therefore, the more private you talk, the better the chances of receiving honest and constructive responses.
Write down everything you think is important
This is classic. As well as knowing which questions to ask, remembering the answers is just as important. And let's face it, this shows your interest in looking for growth. Another important detail is that, regardless of how accustomed to receiving feedback you are, there is always a risk of forgetting something that can be fundamental. Of course, you don't need to record a video about it, but writing down keywords that matter is a great method.
Did not understand? Ask to clarify the points
Again, not all people know how to present their points of view constructively. Often, explaining the points in other ways can ensure the necessary clarity in the dialogue. Make sure you understand the Answer/Question.
Seek to understand both sides and don't be discouraged
One point that is very important to highlight is that a perspective influences each side. Whether for those who will ask for Feedback or for those who will answer it, placing yourself on the other person's side is fundamental for constructive Feedback. The empathy that is necessary to motivate people and generate solutions within the possibilities of each one. We are not always fortunate to receive positive feedback. Knowing how to take advantage of negative points in a mature way is equally important for its evolution. Think, if we only have positive points, we run the risk of entering a “Comfort Zone” that nothing will favor us. As well as vessels such points are important, knowing how to highlight those that do not fit you is fundamental. Be honest with yourself and always maintain the necessary posture for each day better.
Once you have all the information you need to evolve, it’s time to work hard towards that new goal. This is exactly where you can differentiate yourself from other professionals. The path to evolution, be it professional or either a better person, is often challenging but always very rewarding, and tends to be more and more pleasurable, given your growth.
Currently, most Software Developments (such as Agile) have ways of getting Feedback (Evaluation) on the development steps, especially from users. Creating a simple way for the user to send his Feedback, collect information, organize, prioritize, and position according to adjustments and improvements in the project Sprint is something that must be considered from the beginning.
As much as this vision tends to belong to the Project Manager, it is up to the team to discuss ways to include positive and negative points from all parties involved. With the routine of analyzing Feedback from users, employees, partners, and investors (customer), it is possible to have a clear vision of which steps are important for the sustainability of the project. In particular, you should have feedbacks within your management strategy, regardless of any project. As well as Analyze, Plan, Produce are basic and fundamental strategic steps within any project, including evaluation (Feedback capture) and later Optimizing, considering relevant points of the Evaluation is a recommended way to guarantee the health and performance required for any project.
If you have reached this paragraph it is a sign that you have everything to grow and can (should) make good use of the opportunities that life offers you. By the way, taking the opportunity, what did you think of this article? I would like to know your honest opinion and with that, get better every day.
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