Why You Hate Feedback and How to Learn to Love It
“This morning your mirror confirmed that yes, indeed, you do look fat in those pants. Your new puppy let you know that your house-training efforts are not working. … No matter where we get feedback – from our dog or our boss – it can be difficult to take. …
Strong feelings, often evoked by feedback, can accompany chemicals that alter how we process information and can distort the feedback we are hearing … It’s something they call the ‘Google bias,’ which means one lone criticism of your tardiness at work by a colleague can trigger an assessment of your entire life. …
While it’s clear not all of us love getting feedback, the research shows that those who seek it out – especially the negative kind—are seen as more competent and can settle into new roles more quickly. They also fare better on performance reviews.
If you’re ready to get ahead at work, here are some ways to solicit feedback that is likely to be helpful, they say:
- Be specific. Don’t ask, “Do you have any feedback for me?” Instead, ask something like “What’s one thing you see me doing – or failing to do – that’s getting in my own way?”
- Seek out those who rub you the wrong way. People we like and who like us in return aren’t going to point out areas to improve since they probably think everything is great. Look for the colleague you clash with and ask the question listed above. You’re likely to gain insight into what you do to bug that person, and also make some headway in improving the relationship.
- Write it down. If you feel the feedback you’ve received is way off, write down what is wrong with it and what might be right. It just might be that there’s one thing that can give you the insight you need.”