I recently witnessed a colleague turn in a poor performance. I remember thinking how difficult it would be to give him honest feedback on his performance but was instantly comforted by the fact that based on what I knew about him, he’d never ask. He’d prefer to either blame or rationalize his shortcomings or just choose to believe he’d done well.
Asking for feedback helps people become leaders. It also enables them to stay effective leaders.
I’ve often said if you don’t want to know, don’t ask. If you’re a leader, you’ll want to know. That doesn’t mean you’ll adjust to every bit of feedback you receive as if it were profound truth. Feedback is often co-mingled with opinion and personal preference. But enough feedback from enough valued sources will provide valuable information you can use to improve your performance.
Leaders ask because they want to know how they’re doing and how to keep doing better.