Apra Events and Programs · Plug In · Relationship Management
Plug In to Leadership: Feedback as ‘An Act of Compassionate Leadership’
A Plug In Preview With Margaret Katz Cann and Janice Cunning
Apra’s Plug In to Leadership (Nov. 2-3) is around the corner! This virtual learning event gives you a chance to explore your leadership capabilities and learn from experts while making connections with peers.
We spoke with Margaret Katz Cann, who will co-present “The Art of Giving and Receiving Feedback” with Janice Cunning. Get a sneak peek of their session here.
Giving and receiving feedback can be a source of dread. Why is that and what steps can someone take to overcome that dread?
I think many of us dread receiving feedback because it has always felt like criticism. We have a perspective that feedback is always negative and originates from someone telling us we are wrong.
My "a-ha" moment was receiving feedback from someone who had some skill. They held that they were offering not criticism, but offering something to learn from in service of my growth and leadership. That perspective was a game changer.
What’s the best feedback you were given early in your career? How did it change the way you think?
I think the best feedback I received early in my career was the positive kind — and this is important! Feedback is actually not only the growth or negative kind. Acknowledgements, encouragement and positive feedback are important.
During journalism school, I got a lot of positive feedback on my writing and reporting, which encouraged me to be a journalist for my first professional chapter. Writing has been part of my life ever since.
What skills can people practice to deliver better feedback?
We'll cover a lot of this in our session, but two things include:
- Ask for permission, as in, "Is this a good time?"
- Language matters. This is a moment to care personally about the receiver of your feedback, and hold a stake for their growth.
What do you hope attendees will take away from your session?
We hope they will change their thinking about giving and receiving feedback. We also hope they understand that giving and receiving feedback, when done skillfully, is an act of compassionate leadership.