The Art of Giving Feedback

Giving feedback — is that an Art or a Science? Let us leave that argument for the pundits. The bottom line though is that it is one life skill that all of us would do good to understand and master.

I have often been quite amazed, when I have witnessed somebody giving a very strong feedback to a colleague or an acquaintance, and yet the receiver — far from being defensive — receives the feedback in a very positive manner. How does this happen? Does it only depend on the receiver or does the sender play an equally important role in successful feedback sharing?

Years of getting feedback — a lot of it from my wife (sob!) — has taught me that the feedback giver plays a big role in making the receiver open and comfortable, even before he starts giving the actual feedback. At such times, feedback that is given — is gracefully done so — and often helps strengthening the bond with the receiver.

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