I hope you had success with the previous beliefs.
Today I’m going to talk about the belief that there’s no failure, only feedback and also explain how you can give effective feedback to others.
In the past when something hasn’t worked out as planned, how many times have you considered it or yourself a “failure?” And how much better would it be if you perceived it as feedback instead, learned what you could improve and succeeded next time?
We live in an era where we get so much “feedback” especially if we post things online, and it can be tempting to take comments personally or to consider our work or ourselves as a “failure”. Maybe you’re holding on to past “failures” or disappointments and this is stopping you from achieving now or maybe there are things you hold back from doing because of a “fear of failure” or of the negative feedback you may receive.
So what if you were able to learn from negative experiences instead? What this belief means is that if you haven’t succeeded in something it doesn’t mean that you’ve failed, just that you haven’t succeeded yet. A great example of this is Thomas Edison who tried 10,000 different ways before he invented the light bulb and each time he took the results as feedback, made some changes and tried again. What he said was that he hadn’t failed, he’d just found 10,000 ways that didn’t work.
Here are some ways you can integrate this belief into your life.
a) Are there things in your past you consider as disappointments or “failures”? Take each one; consider what specifically you could learn from what didn’t go as planned and what you could do differently in the future. Now notice how different that feels.
b) Are there areas in life where you’re not getting the results you want? If so what can you learn and how can you vary your behaviour to increase your chances of success?
c) If you considered failure as feedback what specifically are you going to do now do that you weren’t doing before?
If you do this then you will be able to learn from everything and anything that happens to you and be more likely to achieve what you want in life.
How to give Effective Feedback
As I’ve said we’re constantly bombarded with feedback and so much of it is not delivered effectively. Effective and constructive feedback; however helps us to grow both professionally and personally. I recall a time I introduced myself to a group and afterwards a man came up to me and launched straight into criticising what I’d said. I immediately became defensive and irritated and crucially stopped listening so that even if he’d said something helpful, I wasn’t going to take it on board.
Imagine instead if he’d first said what he liked about my speech and then followed this by what I could do even better next time. I would have listened and been more likely to listen to him and learn from what he said.
There are lots of ways to give do this and one way I’ve know that works is the feedback sandwich:
1. Start with positive comments or strengths, aim to come up with 3. Focus on behaviour:
2. Then mention one opportunity for growth, or what the person could improve: “what would make it even better is…..”.
3. And end on a positive comment, “and overall it was ….”
So the above example could have been something like “Thank you; you explained the project simply and clearly, your graphs demonstrated your progress and you obviously have a deep understand of the subject. I would have found it useful to have time to ask questions as there is more that I would like to know and overall it was excellent.”
I have this used model many times and have seen how effective and helpful it is, and by listing strengths,
• The giver can link the strengths to the challenges and
• The receiver can use his/her strengths to make relevant improvements
It’s as easy as 1-2-3!
a) Next time you have a need to give someone feedback use the sandwich and notice how well it is received.
b) If someone is giving you feedback and is not using the model, understand that this is just their view and it is not necessary for you to believe it (remember my last blog – this is their map of the world). Encourage them to use the model.
Until next time.