haruki zaemon


I write, therefore I am.

Thanks for the Feedback: The Science and Art of Receiving Feedback Well by Douglas Stone

  1. by Simon Harris
  2. Dec 16, 2021

Jess and I read it at the same time on a road trip and we both took a lot from it. It’s full of examples that seemed like they were taken specifically from our marriage! At least half-a-dozen times we both laughed at how close the examples matched the exact arguments we’d had.

Giving feedback is hard and tailoring it to the individual can be challenging. When you get it right, it can pay off big time. Thankfully, the book has plenty of advice for how to improve the way we give advice.

Of course, not everyone will be great at delivering feedback, and even when they’re good at it, they’re not going to get it right every time. The likelihood that we will receive feedback exactly the way we want is low. Unsurprisingly, given the title, the book has plenty of advice for how we can equip ourselves to be better at receiving feedback.

I realised while reading this book that when I have resented feedback in the past, it was often because I felt obliged to do something concrete with it. Appreciating that ultimately it’s up to me to decide whether and how I respond to the feedback has made it much easier to welcome, receive, and process feedback.

I read the book with the intention to put the lessons into practice at work; it also improved the way Jess and I give and receive feedback as well.

No matter how hard to hear, there’s always something useful behind the feedback we receive. Be open to it. Receive it in good faith. And remember, you’re always in control of what you do with it.