• Our hope-filled future is bound up in sharing the story of Jesus, in discipling others, in bringing those disciples together into communities of believers, and in developing and releasing those believers to create other communities... till Jesus the King comes again!

Ask who? (again)

Ad made a comment on my blog post yesterday.  Here’s what he wrote: “”Go directly to the people you have the hardest time with. Ask them what you’re doing that’s exacerbating the situation. They will surely tell you.”  Mmmh, what about if the people are from a culture with indirect communication?  Would not a mediator be better to ask that question?

Ad hit the proverbial ‘nail on the head’.  It’s why listening is so important, and why it is a skill that most of us need to be working on continually.  Not only will listening well help us benefit from the feedback we receive, it will teach us to look for the best context in which to ask and receive that feedback.

I think that is why the writers of Thanks for the Feedback: The Science and Art of Receiving Feedback Well, stated earlier in yesterday’s quote: “… then there’s something going on that you’re not “getting,” and without her help, you’re not going to get it.  It may be a cultural difference that you need to understand if you’re going to be effective in her market.”

Not only do we need to be aware of cultural cues that we may be missing in our conversations, but we also need to understand how to ask for feedback in a culturally appropriate way.  If you are from an indirect culture, asking for feedback or receiving feedback will look quite different from those who are from direct cultures.

However, what remains constant is how we will choose to respond to that feethanksForFeedbackdback. 

It’s funny.  I can read the title of this book in two ways.  I could read it, “thanks for the feedback” and in my mind say it with a very begrudging tone.  Or, I could read it, “thanks for the feedback” and in my mind say it with an honest and grateful tone; thinking what I will “mine” from this feedback that will help me grow.

When you hear feedback, with what tone are you most often saying in your mind: “Thanks for the feedback”?

3 Responses

  1. What a great example of emotional intelligence!!!

  2. we need to let listening teach us to ..”look for the best context to ask and receive feedback..” important point- what does that look like?

    • Looking for the best context means to assess how would the person I will give feedback to best receive the feedback I want to give. What cultural elements personality elements or other elements of the person do I need to keep in mind as I share feedback with this person.

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