Article: How Appetizing Is Your
(How to Motivate with
Recently, I was watching a rerun of the successful television show, The Cosby
Show. The patriarch of this professional family (He is a doctor and his
wife is a lawyer.) played by Bill Cosby, was just told by his college-bound
daughter that the boyfriend she brought home to meet him was really her fiancé.
He was disappointed with the news. Disappointed not in the young man or what he
did (he was a “maintenance engineer”), but in the way he was told about this
Cosby said that the way he was told was like taking a sizzling, delicious,
robust T-bone steak and serving it on a garbage can lid. It’s not too
appetizing. You know the steak is delicious, but would we really want to eat
it? It’s not too appetizing.
you, when you give feedback, do you make it appetizing for the receiver of the
feedback? Or do you make your “steak” indigestible? We can be giving great
feedback everyday and, unless we make it appetizing so others will digest it,
our feedback will not acted upon.
following are ten techniques for making your feedback more appetizing:
Prep for a Great Meal
as you would prep for a great meal, you should prepare to give feedback.
Mentally go over the following:
Is the feedback
What do I want
to accomplish with the feedback?
Who are the
persons I will be giving the feedback to?
How will they
take my feedback? How can I make my feedback more appetizing for them?
How have they
taken feedback in the past?
someone better I can enlist to “serve” the feedback?
as you would expect to produce a great meal, mentally expect to have a great
feedback session. Take time to visualize the positive interaction and results
by giving the feedback. Know that you will improve the lives of those you give
feedback to and how you will accomplish your goals.
Note: Remember, all feedback, with the goal of improving another individual or
situation, is positive. It’s when we are not receiving or giving constant
feedback that situations turn negative due to misunderstandings.
Timing Is All
Important for a Great Meal
Make sure you are giving the
feedback when it is needed. Giving feedback too long after there is need will
dilute the “hunger” for the feedback. Giving feedback too early when there is
no “hunger” for the feedback will allow your meal, your feedback, to go to waste
and not have the impact on behavior that you need.
Ingredients Are the Start of a Great Meal
Be consistent every time you
give feedback so that the person receiving the feedback will know what to
expect. Be fair in your feedback. Also focus your feedback on actions
observed, not the person. Or, as I say, “point to point, not person to
person.” Use “I” statements.
Be direct in
your feedback. Just like you wouldn’t want to wait forever to get to the main
course, you wouldn’t want to wait forever for someone to tell you why they are
giving you feedback.
expectations so they want to eat. Instead of saying the following:
“Mike, come by my office today at 3 p.m. so that I can give you some
“constructive criticism.” Mike is thinking he had rather be having a root canal.
Say the following:
“Mike, come by office at 3 p.m. today. I have some ideas on how to
make your job easier (or some other benefit) and would value your feedback.”
Remember, in order for the
receiver of the feedback to be hungry for the information, apply the “What’s In
It For Me” (WIIFM) technique. Ask yourself, “What is the benefit to the
receiver of my feedback?”
our utensils, the words we use, when serving the meal. For example, if you
noticed someone unfocused in their conversation, you might say the following:
“Sue, slow down! You are
rambling too much.”
Instead say the following:
“Sue, you sure have a lot on
your mind. Let’s concentrate on top the three points you want to discuss.”
Use positive words to create
a great meal.
Feedback on the Meal
Encourage the other person to
give you feedback on your feedback. This may clear up any misunderstandings.
Also, it shows that you value the other person’s opinion.
End the Meal on a Positive Note
Appreciate their time, their manners, and overall demeanor to the feedback.
Let them know that you appreciate the efforts they are making. Also tell them
that you expect that there will be a positive outcome from the feedback
session. Also, let them know that you are there to help them succeed.
Apply these team building and feedback techniques at work, home or in the community to ensure that your
feedback is more appetizing to others. Bon appétit!
team building, feedback, and motivation reading:
Seven Secrets to Being the Leader Everyone
Wants to Work For
Five Secrets to Becoming the Perfect Employee
That Everyone Wants – Part One
Have You Appreciated Someone Today?
Nine Ways Johnny Carson Can
Help You Run Outstanding Meetings
You Mean I Need to
Promote Myself to Get a Promotion? 5 Promotion Secrets to Get the Job You Want!
Five Secrets to
Gaining Credibility with Your Team for Outstanding
Ten Techniques for
Motivating Others Through Chaos
Action Steps to Motivate Yourself to Great Accomplishments
Eight Ways to Motivate
Appreciate to Motivate
(The Key to Successful Team Building)
Leadership Secrets for Challenging Times
How Appetizing Is
Your Feedback? (5 Steps to Giving Effective Feedback)
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