Seeking professional feedback is an important part of professional development. When you create a tribe of colleagues and clients in whom you trust, their input is invaluable. They become mentors, sponsors, sounding boards and guides who believe in who you are, as a Professional of Worth. A professional feedback board of directors, co-invested in your professional success.
Professionals who create, cultivate and curate a professional feedback tribe understand a critical element to its success: feedback is feedback which works in both directions. And, creating a professional feedback tribe results in insightful conversations which help everyone gain greater insight and self-confidence.
However, several factors derail the value of professional feedback.
Too much feedback, too frequently.
First, you can become overly dependent on continuously seeking professional feedback. As a result, you ask far too many colleagues to provide feedback about your performance. Over time, you lose confidence in your ability to judge the value of your own performance. Consequently, you are completely invested in the idea that your performance only is valid based on how others perceive it. Instead, how about developing a set of questions to clarify the context and intent of this feedback?
Limited feedback loop.
Then, when I work with clients on purpose-driven professional branding, I hear backstories about how professionals become stuck, obsessing about a manager’s or colleague’s evaluation. As a result of this limited scope, you hold yourself back, based on a few opinions, which may only be delivered during annual performance reviews.
Anticipating negative feedback.
In addition, I find that, when seeking professional feedback, many professionals only expect to hear a critique about what they did wrong. Instead of praise for what they do right. And, when these professionals are praised, they do not believe in the feedback. They are so dependent on continuously asking for and receiving negative feedback, that they lose confidence that they are worthy of positive feedback.
Ask yourself whether the colleagues and clients, who currently provide you feedback, are candidates for your ideal professional feedback tribe.
Yes, you will endure various performance reviews by your employer. And, seriously, not all managers are toxic. However, professionals who are invested in their own success cultivate a cross-disciplinary cadre of colleagues and clients. This professional feedback tribe includes colleagues from different pay grades, job titles, levels of education and generations. This team brings diverse perspectives, resources and networks to the table. And, these colleagues are invested in their own growth, as well as yours.
When your board of professional feedback directors has your back, and you theirs, seeking professional feedback ceases to be a daily habit. You stop being paralyzed to perform and start trusting your own judgment. As a result, seeking feedback becomes a forum for professional growth: for the entire board. Because, your professional feedback tribe also is invested in the confidence and insights you bring to the table, as well.
Take the next steps right now. Let’s continue our conversation.
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Babette Ten Haken’s One Millimeter Mindset® Storytelling Speaking Programs, Workshops and Facilitation Services leverage storytelling for STEM professionals and left brain thinkers to catalyze employee and customer success and retention. She motivates individuals and teams to combine courage, curiosity and critical thinking skills to co-create compelling stories which inspire trust in one another. Especially in industries with STEM and left-brain stakeholders. Find out more about Babette’s professional story here. Babette is a member of SME, ASQ, SHRM and the National Speakers Association. Her playbook of communication hacks, Do YOU Mean Business? is available on Amazon.com. Contact Babette here. Image source: Adobe Stock