Becoming the Business Person You Were Meant To Be – Part 8: Feedback

So now you are working toward your goal, you are holding yourself accountable for implementing your plans, and probably beginning to feel more focused and like you are on the path to your vision.  What helps keep you on the path?  How will you know when to make course corrections?  What are you measuring to see what progress you are making?

Of course tangible goals like losing weight, or eating better can be measured on a scale, or by tracking your meals and looking back to see how you did.  But what about other goals you might have like losing your temper less often, or listening better?  Because these goals are measured by how others perceive you and your behavior, you may need to develop a system for getting regular feedback and understanding how much progress you are making, and what else you might need to consider.

In the work environment, you may already be getting feedback from peers, a boss, investors, and at home you may have a partner, children or other family members who observe you first hand.  Instead of relying on existing feedback mechanism, it can be very helpful to ask these observers about what they see you doing and how that has changed.  What appears to be working, and what remains to be improved?  If your goal is a great working relationship with your team, ask them how they would characterize your working relationship with them now and how that has changed since you began implementing your strategies.

Let others know what you are working on, and ask them to help you by letting you know how you are doing on that.  By being vulnerable and human, and letting others know you are aware of areas you could do better, you are likely to be seen in a more sympathetic light even when you do not make progress, or when you backslide.

Feedback is critical when you are seeking a result that involves other people and their perception of your behavior and how it impacts your relationship with them.  You may think you have dramatically improved your listening skills, but if no one else can see a difference, you may still have a long way to go, and detailed feedback from a trusted source can be the difference between making a quantum leap toward your goals and meandering along and perhaps missing the mark and ultimately slowing your progress toward your vision.