Feedback practice

Stewards: Dianne Colling, Meaghan Nowicki and Jamal Tekleweld

At the Ian Martin Group, we believe that feedback helps us grow faster, build trust, and improve our contribution in the quest to do meaningful work.

Goal of giving Feedback:

Give specific, non-judgemental feedback using “SBI”:

  1. Notice your reaction. Decide to address it or let it rest.
  2. Prepare your feedback in SBI form – write it down, process your feelings, and ask yourself what are facts and what are assumptions.
  3. Connect & ask to give feedback
    (from best to worst):

    • i) In Person
    • ii) Video Call
    • iii) Phone

Giving Feedback using the SBI model

In the meeting be clear that you would like to give the person feedback that you have prepared, and that your hope is to have a productive/useful/healthy/constructive discussion using SBI/TIR.

  1. Situation: Name the specific time and place the event happened.
  2. Behaviour: Describe the words or actions that you observed. This should include facts only, not assumptions, intentions, presumed motivations, etc.
  3. Impact:

If relational/behavioural feedback – name how this made you feel, how it impacted you personally.

      • Use the actual feeling word(use the “feelings wheel”) when describing the impact. “ I felt (specific feelings word)”
      • Avoid the word “like” (“It felt like…”) since that will be followed by an assumption/judgement and not your own feeling.

If contribution/performance/business-impact feedback – name how the behaviour impacted or affected your work or the business overall.

      • Detail the actual negative business impact, risk, delay, waste, missed opportunity, etc. Try to quantify it.
      • Give a sense of how significant you feel this negative impact was (e.g. on a scale of 1-10) so the other person can put it in perspective.
      • If you expect behavioural change include it.

Follow-up when there is an ongoing performance concern or business impact:

If you are providing the same feedback for a second time because there has not been a change:

  • Share your written feedback through email after you’ve shared it with the receiver.
  • If the issue is significant enough you would consider a Contribution Review, share with the person that you intend to ask them to complete a Contribution Review if the behaviour/concern/impact doesn’t change.

Receiving Feedback:

Goal: Make it psychologically safe for the person giving feedback using #TIR. Feedback is a ‘gift’ – it will help the receiver learn, grow, and improve your impact, when you welcome it with open and inquisitive reception. It takes care and courage to provide feedback. The receivers role is to ‘unwrap’ the gift.

  1. Thank you – Encourage & genuinely thank the giver for the gift of feedback. Use empathy.
  2. Inquire – Be curious – ask the giver questions to deeply understand your impact and how you can improve. For example:
    • Have you seen this type of behaviour from me before, if so, when?
    • Could you tell me more about why it made you feel __________ (pick a specific impact they shared and use the actual feeling word)?
    • Was my body language or tone a contributing factor?
    • Can you tell me more about the negative impact that I had?
    • How would you have preferred me to have behaved? What else could I have done instead?
    • How would you like me to change my behaviour going forward?
    • Are there any assumptions about my intentions/motivations which you would like me to address? (an invitation to do “Intent/Impact” – if they say no then you shouldn’t “explain”)
  1. Repeat & Record – Repeat and summarize the SBI and any commitments that you made about behaviour change, if applicable. Record the feedback in 15five using the #TIR to show the giver you welcome feedback, heard them, and to increase psychological safety. Write as much detail as you’re comfortable sharing.