Now That You Know: What Do You Do With That Feedback?


The previous post walked you through how to ask for and receive feedback. You’ve asked for it, you’ve received it with grace, and now – what do you do with it?

You have two choices.

The first is to reject it. You may not agree with what you heard. Why act on something you disagree with? After all, it’s an opinion. However, tread lightly here. Give this feedback some time to settle – you may find some truth in it and decide differently later. Check out your tendency to reject the feedback  with someone you trust.

The second is to decide to do something about it. What actions will you take? Some ideas:

  • Gain clarity around the feedback you’ve received. You can return to the original feedback-giver and ask additional questions. Ask others you trust for their input, too.
  • Consider actions you’ll take. For some, talking it with a mentor, advisor or coach helps. Thinking out loud and asking for advice on the actions to be taken can be helpful. For others, journaling and reflecting on what you heard and the actions you can take are preferable.
  • Find a way to stay accountable as you take action. Although many are self-motivated, others of us may need the structure of “reporting in” to someone on a regular basis as we work our way through. Writing it down, in the form of an action plan, can help to solidify your intent (sharing the plan is even better!).
  • Ask for help from your staff, manager, and peers. Let them know what you are working on, and request that they assist in some way: ask them to let you know when you have strayed from your path or when you are following it.
  •  Adjust as necessary. Continue asking for feedback, and adjust your actions accordingly, until it fits just right for you.

As I look back on what I’ve written above, there seems to be a theme: the power of a support structure of trusted advisors cannot be underestimated! What have you found to be useful in taking action on feedback?


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Mary Jo Asmus is the founder and President of Aspire Collaborative Services LLC, an executive coach, writer, internationally recognized thought leader, and a consultant who partners with organizations of all kinds to develop and administer coaching programs. She has “walked in your shoes” as a former leader in a Fortune company.

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