I’ve often blogged about how leaders can give negative feedback more effectively (including this post: Five things every leader should know about giving negative feedback). But a recent event caused me to consider how good leaders are at soliciting and listening to negative feedback.
Only the wearer knows where the shoe pinches.
My dad used this phrase the other day, specifically to give a vendor negative feedback about unsatisfactory service. My father had complained about the quality of the service he had received from one of the company’s staff members, and the supervisor-in-charge was arguing with him, questioning my dad’s account, and suggesting that what he had received was adequate. My dad’s response was a succinct way of emphasizing that because he was the sole recipient of the service, he was the only one who could offer first-hand knowledge of whether the result was acceptable or not. In other words, the person receiving the service is in the best position to offer feedback, both positive and negative!
This phrase got my attention, and not just because it was unusual. Continue reading