Is Feedback Valuable?

Is Feedback Valuable?

A key aspect of the Leaders Ought To Know® initiative is the interaction that happens between participants.  We have lively discussions when we get together for our biannual on-site retreats.  But even on a weekly basis, the interaction using the Leaders Ought To Know® Learning System is excellent.

Recently I was doing an analysis of the interaction in the Discussion Forums between participants from one of our clients.  I was particularly impressed by the postings of one specific individual.  So as not to embarrass him, I’ll call him “Kyle.”  Kyle’s comments were always insightful, not necessarily long or wordy, but always adding a helpful insight or perspective.  Kyle weighed in on almost every topic open for discussion.  He was very generous with his comments.  And, on top of that, Kyle frequently responded to postings from his colleagues.  He would reinforce what had been said by someone else or offer a different way of looking at things.  Again and again, I found Kyle had been on a particular discussion thread, adding his helpful insights.  In a six month period, Kyle had posted 182 comments in the Leaders Ought To Know® Learning System discussion forums.

When we were at our mid year retreat with the group that Kyle is a part of, I took him aside and asked him about his participation.  His humility was refreshing.  He said, “I try to use it every day,” but Kyle was surprised that his interaction was higher than anyone else in his group.  He said he likes to use movie analogies to illustrate his points.  But then he said something that surprised me. Kyle said he will write something and post it and then say, “Oh, that was stupid.”  He admitted he has often wished he could “take it back.”  I thought that was interesting because I had found almost every posting from Kyle to contain a gem.  I told Kyle he should keep up the good work, and others in the group agreed: Kyle’s input was helpful.

The moral of Kyle’s story is simple: share your thoughts generously and give people the gift of your feedback. If you’re wondering, is my feedback valuable — what you have to say can help or encourage someone.  But they won’t know it, unless you give it away.  Kyle was lavish with his comments. Let’s all be more like Kyle.

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