Imagine having no idea of how your behaviour affects others. Not knowing how you come across. I am sure we have all met people who are oblivious of how their behaviour impacts on others. They say ‘I had no idea that my behaviour was offending or annoying others’.
So, how can you be sure that you are fully aware of your impact? The most obvious way is to …..ask. ‘How does my behaviour affect you? What can I do to support you more? Am I doing anything that demotivates you? What am I doing that helps or hinders your work performance?
The next step is the hard one. You must listen to the answer without being defensive. You asked for the feedback. You now need to listen to the feedback. It’s your decision on whether you act on the feedback. It is essential that you listen patiently to the feedback that you requested. Here are some simple techniques:
Stay calm – breathe in deeply if you feel the need to defend yourself.
Pause before any response.
Confirm your understanding ‘So you are saying that I don’t listen when you offer ideas.’
Maintain eye contact.
Imagine that the comments are to help you improve.
You can practise today. Ask someone how you can help them improve their performance. Ask if there is anything you are doing that hinders performance.
….and listen very carefully to what they say.