Wouldn't it be nice if the only feedback we got was all positive? Our self-esteem would be so happy. Our confidence would be flying high. Work would be wonderful!
The problem is, the mistakes we make, the opportunities we miss, the offenses we offer would go unchecked leading to - gulp - worse performance.
Yes, we love the positive feedback. I can run a week on one "good job!" We also really need the constructive comments. Ready or not, we can always improve.
Asking only for positive feedback sounds comforting but it's wrong. We need to ask for feedback and handle it, positive or not. If we do not receive any constructive feedback, as high performance leaders we owe it to ourselves and our teams to ask for it.
It's also true when it comes to delivering feedback. Our constructive feedback for others may make them uncomfortable. Our observations of behavior may run counter to their self-evaluation. As leaders, we owe it to people to help them improve, to lead them to places they've never managed to obtain before. And that often involves feedback for improvement.
Accept all the positive feedback you can earn, and share positive feedback every time you discover something wonderful -- while also giving time and attention to feedback for improvement.
That's what you do, right?
-- doug smith