Providing or receiving feedback is not always easy, since the most useful feedback is that which highlights areas for improvement.
One way to make the provision of feedback easier on both the provider and reciever, whether that be a friend, family member, or colleague, is to make sure it is constructive feedback.
Constructive feedback can be utilised by the receiver to work on those areas requiring improvement. In other words, it empowers them rather than deflates them.
Using the acronym CORBS can help you be constructive in your feedback:
Be CLEAR in the strengths and weaknesses demonstrated by the person you are providing feedback to.
OWN the fact that your feedback is your own perception and also reflects information about yourself .
Make the feedback REGULAR in that it is provided immediately after the action or event that you are providing feedback on.
Be BALANCED with the feedback, cushioning action points for improvement between positive feedback.
Be SPECIFIC, ensuring that the feedback can be use and learnt from.
Another way to help in the provision of constructive feedback is to imagine a sandwich or burger:
The top slice of bread is positive feedback.
The filling is constructive feedback.
The bottom slice of bread is more positive feedback.
This keeps the feedback balanced, cushions any negative feedback, and empowers the receiver to tackle those areas that need working on.
The receiver of the feedback can come away with negative feedback still with a boost to their morale, which will help them target those areas that need improving.
If you have any ideas or techniques for providing constructive feedback, please do share.