Are you tired of avoiding those dreaded feedback conversations like they’re a swarm of angry bees? Well, fear not! In this podcast episode, we dive deep into the world of feedback to help you become a confident and effective feedback giver.

Feedback isn’t just about formal performance conversations or receiving grades on tests. It can take various forms, such as verbal or written communication, body language, and more. We debunk common feedback myths and share real-life examples of both good and bad feedback scenarios, allowing you to learn from others’ experiences.

But that’s not all! We’re excited to invite you to a free virtual masterclass on giving feedback that doesn’t suck. Join us on either June 26th or June 27th, depending on your time zone, for a deep dive into the feedback formula. In this masterclass, you’ll have the opportunity to workshop your own feedback conversations and even participate in a hot seat coaching session with me. Plus, there are amazing prizes up for grabs for those who attend live!

Imagine feeling more confident and capable as a leader, effortlessly navigating tough feedback conversations with grace. Picture yourself inspiring growth and driving positive change within your team through effective feedback. It’s all within your reach, and we’re here to show you the way.

So, if you’re ready to polish up your feedback skills and become a feedback rockstar, join us for this transformative masterclass. Secure your spot now at or find the link in the show notes. We can’t wait to see you there and help you elevate your feedback game. Remember, every improvement you make in feedback has a compounding effect, and you’ll be equipped to tackle feedback conversations like a pro in no time. See you at the masterclass!

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Episode Transcript

Are you tired of dodging feedback conversations like they’re a swarm of angry bees? I get it. Giving feedback can be daunting, especially if you’ve had bad experiences in the past or worried about the consequences. But fear not because you are not alone in this struggle.

So what actually is feedback?

It’s not just a formal performance conversation or when you get a B on a test. Feedback can be verbal, written, body language, formal, or informal. Essentially, it is any transfer of information. If your child has rolled their eyes when you ask them to tidy their room, you know that is a piece of feedback.

In today’s podcast episode, we’ll be diving deep into the world of feedback. We’ll be debunking some common myths and exploring some real-life examples of both good and bad feedback scenarios. There will also be an opportunity to get a seat in a free virtual masterclass that I’m running on giving feedback that doesn’t suck.

You can join me on the 26th of June or the 27th of June, depending on your time zone, where we’ll dive deep into the feedback formula, workshop your own feedback conversations, and one person can even have a hot seat coaching session with yours truly. Plus, if you’ve ever attended any of my online workshops, you know there are always amazing prizes up for grabs for those who attend live.

So let’s get into feedback.

No one starts their day thinking, “I want to be terrible at my job.” So why do so many of us have stories about receiving feedback poorly?

The main reason is that we’re all pretty terrible at giving feedback. We just haven’t really been taught. It’s the same with most things in leadership.

I often use the example that someone who is a wonderful engineer then becomes the leader of a whole group of other wonderful engineers. And it’s not the same skillset, and they haven’t been taught how to lead. So when we’re talking about giving feedback, it’s important to learn how to give feedback.

Let’s start with some examples of feedback that you could have heard in the workplace. Maybe it’s happened to you, or maybe you’ve been the one giving the feedback. This one, I like to call the Blunt Bombshell. So if someone says, “I’ve worked really hard on this project, can you give me some feedback?” And the manager says, “Honestly, it was terrible. You missed the mark completely.”

That is what I call the blunt bombshell. A second example is the non-existent feedback. Unfortunately, a lot of us are guilty of this one for not realizing how important feedback is.

So the employee says, “Do you have any suggestions on how I can improve my presentation skills?” And you say, “No, you’re fine. Just keep doing what you’re doing.”

Or the public humiliation, and I think we’ve all experienced this one and absolutely cringed when a manager in front of the team says, “Your performance has been consistently disappointing, and you’re letting everybody down.”

And one last one, the vague critic. An employee says, “How did I do in the meeting?” And perhaps you say, “Yeah, okay. It wasn’t great. You need to improve.” But there’s nothing specific about it.

Maybe these sound familiar to you from some feedback that you’ve given or perhaps it’s feedback that you have received. But how can we do better?

Let’s first do some myth-busting, starting with the compliment sandwich. The compliment sandwich was the recommended approach many years ago, perhaps even decades ago. And it was based around starting with a compliment as the bread, then in the middle, providing constructive feedback, and ending with another compliment as the “compliment sandwich.”

Why is this bad? Well, anytime you give a compliment, they’re going to wait for the other shoe to drop. Essentially, they’re going to wait because they believe that there’s going to be something negative coming, and they will never trust anything positive you say again.

If you need to give feedback about improvement, it needs to be clear and kind. Not sugarcoat it. Which leads me to the next myth: feedback should be sugarcoated to avoid hurting feelings. Definitely a myth.

Sometimes people feel hesitant to provide honest feedback because they believe it’s necessary to soften words to avoid hurting feelings. It is important to be tactful and considerate in delivering the feedback. But if you sugarcoat it, it can dilute the message and hinder that person’s growth.

I use the term “clear and kind” from Brené Brown, and that is a good thing to keep in mind when giving feedback. It needs to be clear so they know what it’s about, but it also needs to be kind.

The fourth myth to debunk today is that feedback should only be given in formal settings. I have often had managers say to me, “They’re not performing, but we’ve got performance reviews next month, and I’ll bring it up then.”

And this is a big red flag for me. I always recommend that a performance review should have no surprises. If someone’s performance is not meeting expectations, you need to have the conversation at the time or as close to the time as you can. Waiting until the performance review is a big no-no for the same reason that the compliment sandwich doesn’t work.

People will start to wait for this performance review. So you could be waiting six months to give feedback on something, and your team member will also be waiting for their performance review to hear all the negative feedback, and they will dread it. A performance review should be 20% about the past and 80% about the future, setting goals and what they want to do next. You should be giving feedback at the time. One of the reasons we’re not great at giving feedback at the time is that we might not realize how to do it or we might not know how.

Now that you’ve heard some myths and examples about feedback, you might feel that it’s time to polish up your skills a bit or finally learn about how to give feedback.

Imagine feeling more confident and capable in your role as a leader. Picture yourself having these tough conversations with ease and grace, knowing that your feedback will inspire growth and drive positive change with your team.

This is within your reach, and I’m here to show you the way. I’ll be hosting a free virtual masterclass that will last one hour on the 26th of June, which is a Monday evening for the US and Canada, or Tuesday, the 27th of June, in the morning for Australia.

This masterclass will cover three things. Firstly, we will cover the feedback formula. I will equip you with the essential tools to transform your feedback conversations by following this simple formula. The second thing we’ll cover is workshopping your feedback conversations. So this is where you get to do some hands-on action. We’ll dive into one feedback conversation that you’ve been longing to have. But don’t worry, you’ll have the chance to work on it individually. So feel free to keep it to yourself unless you want to share your breakthrough with the group. This section of the masterclass is all about making it actionable. I want you to leave this masterclass with a clear action plan of how to have this feedback conversation, something that you can implement right away.

The third thing we’ll cover in this masterclass is a hot seat. This is the highlight of the masterclass and an opportunity for one person to be coached by me. I will help you with your feedback conversation, and you can witness how transformative a great feedback conversation can be. Sometimes seeing somebody engage in a feedback conversation can really help it make sense for you. And as always, for all of my live masterclasses, there are prizes up for grabs for those who attend live. So not only will you gain priceless knowledge and skills, but you also have the chance to walk away with something extra special, which is a win-win.

So jump online to secure your spot in this masterclass at or go into the show notes and follow the link. I look forward to seeing you live on that masterclass and helping you improve your feedback skills. Just remember, every improvement you make in feedback has a compounding effect because feedback is something we engage in every single day. I look forward to you joining me live.

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