As leaders, we talk about coaching tips and how to give feedback to our teams; it’s important to know if our people are in the right frame of mind to receive feedback. It’s also essential to gut-check ourselves to ensure we’re in the right frame of mind to give feedback.
We all strive to give feedback in a positive way that builds people up, but sometimes, if we’re in the wrong frame of mind, it can tear people down. This happens to me; when I try to give feedback when I’m frustrated, it’s not as helpful or productive as it should be.
Recently, I got home from a trip to New York, and on my way home, a deer ran out in front of me on the highway, and I hit it. My car was jacked up, OnStar had to come out, and it was a whole deal. It’s all good now, but I was shaken the next morning and rushed to switch vehicles and get my truck into the shop. I was talking to one of my leaders and caught myself failing to deliver the message in the most productive or positive way. I stopped, apologized and shared what had happened. I told them I was frustrated, not in a good mood, and wasn’t in the best headspace to talk or give feedback.
I was given leeway and told, “No worries, I’m glad you’re okay.” We ended on a positive note, and it was a good reminder for me to gut-check myself. Before you give feedback, ask yourself if you’re in the right frame of mind. If you’re frustrated or on edge and it won’t be productive or helpful, sleep on it for 24 hours. I’ve never regretted doing that and coming back when I’m in the right frame of mind.
Give yourself that gut check, try it out, and let me know what you think!