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The Leadership Quest Blog

How to Respond to Feedback

April 30, 2018


There are five practices that leaders follow to be exemplary. These practices include:

  1. Model the Way
  2. Inspire a Shared Vision
  3. Challenge the Process
  4. Enable Others to Act
  5. Encourage the Heart

Within the five practices, there are six behaviors that describe the way to behave to achieve each practice. According to research done in The Leadership Challenge, there is one behavior that resides in the practice of Model the Way, that is the lowest-rated (both by the leader and by the people who rate the leader).

The behavior that is consistently the lowest rated is associated with giving and receiving feedback. This behavior defined is: As a leader, I ask for feedback on how MY actions affect other people in my organization’s performance.

Effective feedback isn’t only about how you communicate the message to others, it’s also how you hear the message from others. When you receive the feedback, how should you respond? Here is a simple four-step process to follow when receiving feedback as a leader:

Listen. Make sure you are listening with presence and asking good questions.

Express Appreciation. Make sure you say Thank You for the feedback you are receiving void of defensiveness or excuses.

Assess. Ask yourself if this is the first time you’ve heard this feedback, or have you heard it before.

Decide. Decide what changes, if any, need to be made and put an action plan in place.

Giving and receiving feedback effectively is an important part of leadership communication. Do you need help with this behavior? Email me:

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