coaching

Back Pocket Coach Strategy #7: May I give you some feedback?

Delivering feedback is not an easy process, and it is even more challenging when the message is potentially negative.  Just the thought of this type of conversation commonly evokes emotional turmoil for both the giver and receiver. Frustrations with an employee, boss, colleague, or other that are not addressed can lead to apathy and an “it’s never going to change” mindset that demoralizes you and others. And, if the situation has existed for awhile, you may need more than one conversation to resolve it.

Also consider that the individual may have no clue there is a concern, because no one has really given him feedback. You or someone else might have hinted, but how clear was the message, and how self-aware is he?

In their book Thanks for the Feedback (2014), Stone and Heen encourage “creating pull” for receiving feedback as opposed to pushing through the resistance. The authors reinforce the value of creating pull for one’s own reflection and personal development.

Pulling or drawing someone into a conversation makes it easier to engage. It is also a smoother transition into a feedback conversation with them.

May I give you Feedback

So how can you deliver feedback with more ease and engage the individual in the conversation?

  1. Check your emotional readiness. What do you need to be at your best and ready?

  2. Create a safe environment for the conversation. Avoid open areas where others might overhear the exchange.

  3. Begin with the question, “May I give you some feedback?” Asking permission invites the individual into dialogue and offers him a choice to participate. It is a respectful way to gain agreement to proceed with the conversation, and it helps the person be more open to hearing what you have to say.

Remember, asking a question like “May I give you some feedback?” is an invitation into a conversation. When we give people a choice to engage, they will be more likely to participate and actually hear what we have to say.

Back Pocket Coach Strategy #20: May I ask a question?

MAY I ASK YOU A QUESTION

Have you ever been in a meeting that has gotten off track and no one, including the meeting organizer, seems to be able to get everyone refocused? Or you’re having a 1-on-1 conversation with your supervisor or colleague about a specific topic and, before you know it, the conversation has veered off course and devolved into something completely irrelevant? There is a brilliantly simple method you can use to refocus a meeting or conversation in a way that respects the people involved and, at the same time, gets everyone back on topic. Simply ask the person responsible for the digression: “May I ask a question?” In a meeting an example of a question could relate to a specific agenda topic. As in, “Earlier you mentioned…which I found extremely relevant to our programmatic goals. Could you elaborate on this?”

When you ask this question, several things happen. First, you are asking permission to enter the conversation, which respects the person who is speaking. Next, asking the question implies your interest in his input. And, if you do this in a meeting, it can also serve to elicit participation from someone who has not yet spoken. Ask the question, then follow with, “I’d like to hear Bob’s thoughts.”

Try “May I ask a question?” You will be amazed at how well this works. And it will also strengthen your connection with the other person.

Strategy #20 “May I ask a question?” | www.BackPocketCoach.com | @RossCoach | @CoachDianeB

Download Back Pocket Coach for free, June 8 & 9

Free download for Back Pocket Coach- 33 Effective Strategies for Work & LifeAvailable Wednesday, June 8 - Thursday, June 9 on Amazon. Click here for your free download of Back Pocket Coach: 33 Effective Communication Strategies for Work & Life!  No matter what your role in an organization, Back Pocket Coach will complement your existing tools and strategies to help you create seriously effective outcomes.

Leaders and Managers: Who doesn’t want to manage a team that is known for its high performance and its collaborative spirit? Or, be part of an organization where you feel valued for your contributions and enjoy coming to work? Back Pocket Coach’s powerful communication strategies can help you get there.

Human Resources / Organizational Development Professionals: Back Pocket Coach can be used to support training and development curricula. The modular nature of the strategies offers flexibility for training events that range from 30 minutes to a full day. Back Pocket Coach can also be useful for internal coaches and human resources business partners in meetings with customer stakeholders.

External Coaches: Experienced executive and business coaches know that inspiring their clients to adopt a learning mindset will help them go further, faster. Back Pocket Coach offers 33 strategies to support your work with your clients. It is a concise, effective learning tool that can be used in coaching sessions and can support ongoing learning and development with practice between sessions.

Here’s what people are saying about Back Pocket Coach...

A Private Coach--in your back pocket: “We all have situations in our business lives when we wish we could call someone and get coached through the problem and best response. Back Pocket Coach does that, and helps prepare us ahead of time for situations that might arise. Alexandra and Diane bring their considerable Executive Coaching experience to this tool to help in four areas: One-on-One Conversations, Conversations On-the-Fly, In Meetings and Self Reflection. My favorite: "What Outcome Do You Want?" It works not only for sticky business situations, meetings but also in personal life. Who doesn't want vetted, successful communication strategies in their life?” -- M.A., Denver

Convenient and easy to use: “Convenient and easy access to very helpful tips on navigating difficult situations and conversations. Situations that require immediate action and responses do not allow me to run back to my office and find the right approach for handling the situation. Having this material in my iPhone, easily accessible and easy to navigate makes it a very useful tool.” -- R.G., California

Concise and Targeted Coaching is Ready-to-Use: “Find experienced, concise and targeted coaching in this extremely user-friendly tool. I've not seen anything like it before. I love this ready-to-use coaching for "just in time" situations as well as for contemplating more deeply. As a trainer, I plan to use these cards in various training environments to help people achieve better results in relationships at work and beyond. Their website blog generously provides even more perspective to some common issues. Their years of experience show up in their style of clear, upbeat, and empathetic communication.” D.W., Boulder

Back Pocket Coach is available for all Apple and Android mobile devices and can be easily accessed using the free Kindle app.

Click here to download your free copy of Back Pocket Coach on Amazon now!

For more information visit us at www.BackPocketCoach.com

And follow us on Twitter at @CoachDianeB and @RossCoach

Back Pocket Coach Strategy #7: May I give you some feedback?

Back Pocket Coach Strategy # 7May I give you some feedback-Delivering feedback is not an easy process, and it is even more challenging when the message is potentially negative.  Just the thought of this type of conversation commonly evokes emotional turmoil for both the giver and receiver. Frustrations with an employee, boss, colleague, or other that are not addressed can lead to apathy and an “it’s never going to change” mindset that demoralizes you and others. And, if the situation has existed for awhile, you may need more than one conversation to resolve it. Also consider that the individual may have no clue there is a concern, because no one has really given him feedback. You or someone else might have hinted, but how clear was the message, and how self-aware is he?

In their book Thanks for the Feedback (2014), Stone and Heen encourage “creating pull” for receiving feedback as opposed to pushing through the resistance. The authors reinforce the value of creating pull for one’s own reflection and personal development.

Pulling or drawing someone into a conversation makes it easier to engage. It is also a smoother transition into a feedback conversation with them. So how can you deliver feedback with more ease and engage the individual in the conversation?

  1. Check your emotional readiness. What do you need to be at your best and ready?
  2. Create a safe environment for the conversation. Avoid open areas where others might overhear the exchange.
  3. Begin with the question, “May I give you some feedback?” Asking permission invites the individual into dialogue and offers him a choice to participate. It is a respectful way to gain agreement to proceed with the conversation, and it helps the person be more open to hearing what you have to say.

Remember, asking a question like “May I give you some feedback?” is an invitation into a conversation. When we give people a choice to engage, they will be more likely to participate and actually hear what we have to say.

Strategy #7 | www.BackPocketCoach.com | @CoachDianeB | @RossCoach

Strategy # 8: Can we continue this conversation later?

another interruptionHave you ever been in the middle of a critical deadline when someone stops by to chat? Or racing to your next meeting and you hear, “Do you have a minute?” as your energy drains at the thought of yet another unexpected conversation. It’s difficult to say anything other than “sure” when you really want to scream, “No, can’t you see I’m busy!” When challenged with how to respond to interruptions, clients often refer to an open door policy - meaning immediate availability, no matter what. The all or nothing thinking that says, there is no other choice than to stop what I’m doing and handle the situation. Feeling no choice in the matter shuts down brain processing and sometimes even the ability to respond with anything other than the habitual “sure.”

How do you excuse yourself from the interruption while maintaining your relationship and rapport with the individual? You might say: “I’d like to continue this conversation, and right now isn’t going to work. When are you next available to talk?” Think about the typical interruptions in your day, and consider a few variations of “Can we continue this conversation later?” You might practice these with trusted colleagues or a coach so you’re prepared to respond in a way that supports positive relationships and rapport and sets the tone for mutual respect instead of frustration.

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Strategy #8 “Can we continue this conversation later?” www.BackPocketCoach.com