Learning-Focused Feedback

There is no greater force to improve the quality of human relationships or improve the way organizations function than to multiply the amount and improve the quality of feedback.
— Jack Zenger

Workshop description

This workshop is predicated on the following observations:

  • One of the most powerful ways to improve your own performance is to receive constructive, actionable feedback.
  • One of the most powerful ways you can help someone else improve their performance is to provide them with constructive, actionable feedback.
  • If you’re an administrator, providing feedback is an essential part of your job.
  • If you’re a teacher, providing feedback to students and parents is an essential part of your job
  • Providing and receiving feedback is one of the most dreaded experiences in the workplace.
  • If you want to strengthen your conversational capacity, one of the most valuable practices is providing and receiving feedback.

In this game-changing session, participants will learn to give and receive useful feedback, and to use it as a practice for building their capacity to balance candor and curiosity.

Why it Matters

“To become more effective and fulfilled at work, people need a keen understanding of their impact on others and the extent to which they’re achieving their goals in their working relationships,” says Ed Batista, an instructor at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. “Direct feedback is the most efficient way for them to gather this information and learn from it.”

Why it’s Difficult

For an educator striving to elevate their performance, giving and receiving constructive, useful feedback are two of the most valuable sources of learning and growth. But they’re also two of the most miserable. Despite the clear value they can provide, giving and receiving feedback are two of the most dreaded experiences in the workplace. The difficulty stems from perceived risks. We fear we might hurt feelings, upset or demoralize someone, look or feel stupid, make things worse rather than better, or get into an argument, just to name a few. In essence, feedback is difficult because we’re worried we’ll be triggered out of the sweet spot, that we’ll trigger the other person out of it, or both.

There’s a Better Way

Feedback thrives in cultures where the goal is not ‘getting comfortable with hard conversations’ but normalizing discomfort.
— Brene Brown

It doesn’t need to be so difficult. We can learn to deliver feedback, and receive it, in a way that sparks more learning and growth than defensiveness and resentment, and in a way that benefits not just the receiver, but the giver as well.

Learning Outcomes:

In this highly practical workshop participants will explore feedback from both directions – giving and receiving. They’ll learn how to:

  • Provide tough feedback in a way that sparks more learning than defensiveness.
  • Deliver clear, actionable feedback rather than vague, “let’s make-‘em-guess” feedback.
  • Prepare for a feedback session so you’re able to maintain a solid fit between your intentions and your behavior.
  • Make giving and receiving feedback a regular, ongoing process of learning rather than a sporadic, rigid, or perfunctory activity.
  • Request and receive useful feedback. (If we want feedback we can’t just sit back and wait for it. We need to seek it out.)
  • Respond to unsolicited feedback in a constructive way – even when it isn’t being delivered constructively.
  • Seek feedback about how you provided feedback so you’re even more equipped and confident the next time you need to deliver it.
  • Do all this as a practice that strengthens your conversational capacity.

Note: this course is particularly useful for preparing for formal evaluation processes, observation feedback sessions, and parent-teacher conferences.

Prerequisite: Conversational Capacity for Educational Professionals

Length: Customized to fit your training schedule

Randy Weber

Randy Weber

Randy Weber has worked with Conversational Capacity concepts and skills for over two decades. With a BA in History from UC Berkeley and a MA in Education from USC, Randy’s primary research and practice has focused on teaching elementary school children the basics of Conversational Capacity. Based on this work, Randy and Craig are co-authoring a new book, tentatively titled Conversational Capacity in the Classroom, to help educators apply the discipline to their demanding work environment.