When I first stepped into the role of team lead at Automattic, I knew one of my biggest areas for growth revolved around feedback. Sure, I’d led a team in the past, but this felt like an entirely new ballgame.
I dove in headfirst into reading all about feedback. I scheduled feedback sessions with everyone on my team and encouraged them to give me feedback as well with leadback surveys. Overall, I thought I had a handle on the feedback thing.
About a year ago, I stumbled across the book Thanks for the Feedback by Douglas Stone and Sheila Heen. Not only did the book have an amazing tagline1; when I put it down, I realized I had earmarked nearly every other page. It changed how I viewed feedback in general.
Giving feedback was only half of the equation; receiving feedback was the other (arguably, more important) half. I realized that focusing on the latter could help with the former.
In January of 2017, I gave a workshop to my colleagues at Automattic all about receiving feedback covering many of the concepts from the book and examples of how I was putting them to use. A few people told me the workshop was helpful so I thought I’d share it here.