3 Variables That Profoundly Affect the Way We Respond to Feedback

As Ken Blanchard says, “Feedback is the breakfast of champions.” But it would seem there are certain things that dictate our appetite for feedback. According to Sheila Heen and Douglas Stone, the co-authors of Thanks for the Feedback: The Science and Art of Receiving Feedback Well, there are specific variables that distort the way we perceive feedback from others.

The following is taken from the BIG Think clip above.

“The first is your Baseline. In the literature this is called set point sometimes. It’s sort of a ‘how happy or unhappy are you,’ in the absence of other events in your life. Where’s that level that you come back to?”

“… the reason this matters for feedback, particularly if you have a low set point or baseline, positive feedback can be muffled for you. The volume is turned down; it’s harder for you to hear it,”

Heen explains that the second variable is Swing, or how much we are moved off of our baseline by any feedback. And the third variable for effective feedback is Recovery, or how quickly we return to our baseline.

It is useful to consider these three factors in the classroom as well, providing us some further ways to consider the impact of feedback for learners. Additionally this helps us to remain focused on how we are making this relevant to individual learners.

You can read more about this here The Science and Art of Receiving Feedback | Think Tank | Big Think

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