Asking the members of any collective or company if they want feedback will get them nodding eagerly. But when push comes to shove, there's often tension in the air, and people get angry. Feedback is hard to give and receive properly. Which is a pity because it is exactly the thing that can help people grow. That's why we at Applifting decided to put together two cookbooks--one for receiving constructive criticism and one for giving it.
Feedback is a very popular, often-used term in working life, but it has also unjustly earned the label of something offensive and useless. Unfortunately, in some circles, unconstructive criticism is passed off as helpful and creative, which is often a manifestation of a toxic blame culture. At Applifting, we want to change this perception and incorporate genuine feedback into our daily life, whether we’re talking about giving it or receiving it. Open communication is one of the cornerstones of our free company culture.
Why is feedback important?
If you don't know what you’re doing right or wrong, you can't change it. That's why we see feedback as a gift, a tool that helps us and others to develop effectively. It allows us to see our strengths and weaknesses through the eyes of others.
But getting feedback is not all there is to it. You need to actively work with it afterwards, develop yourself, achieve your goals, and improve. Otherwise, it’s meaningless.
We are also still learning to work with feedback on a more regular basis. The truth is that we started dealing with this topic in depth at the beginning of this year, following a suggestion from one of our new Applifters, Tereza. We invited an experienced psychologist, Kateřina Valuchová, to help us out, and together we’ve prepared two guides--one for giving constructive criticism and the other for getting and working with it. We encourage Applifters not to be afraid to ask for feedback and to also give it freely. This way, we want to create a safe environment where we can speak our minds without fear and prevent any possible misunderstandings.
Do you work with feedback in your company? Let us know in the comments how and in what ways it works for you.