How Leaders Ask For Feedback Impacts The Feedback They Receive

What do Sir Isaac Newton, Albert Einstein, Frédéric Chopin, George Orwell, Theodor Geisel (Dr. Seuss), Charles Schulz, Steven Spielberg, Larry Page, and J. K. Rowling all have in common? They are all introverts who’s feedback has made a huge impact on our lives.

Often, the most insightful feedback comes from the analytical, introverted observer who spends more time digesting and thinking a situation or problem through before offering their insight.  The challenge is, while they are processing their thoughts (especially in meetings filled with more extroverted types), the train has pulled out of the station before they have had a chance to offer their feedback.  I’m sure you’ve been in those meetings where an idea is presented, excitement builds, momentum is created and the last thing an introvert wants to do is speak up to share the potential obstacles or concerns they have thought about.

As the leader, it’s easy to accept an exciting new idea, but every good leader must explore potential downsides.  Because introverts are known to nod their heads as a way of demonstrating active listening, that head nod is often misinterpreted as consent to the idea at hand.  The team must encourage the introverts to express their opinions.  One of the best ways to do this is when and idea is discussed, take a trip around the room and ask everyone to identify two items they like best and two items that concern them about the idea.

Empower your direct reports to offer a difference of opinion to save yourself and your organization from avoidable problems or disasters while creating plans destined for success.

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Explore posts in the same categories: Leadership, Performance Acceleration

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