The Top 3 Reasons Why Continuous Improvement Is Better Than Delayed Perfection #6
So, this version of Mark Twain’s quote in the headline should have spoken volumes already. But in case it hasn’t, let me share some further thoughts on this.
Continuous feedback is instantly better than perfecting yourself once a year.
Think of Agile delivery methodologies, iterative development, continuous integration and continuous development (CI/CD).
All of it is based on the premise that we learn and improve slightly regularly.
The same premise applies to giving and receiving feedback from our peers and colleagues.
This is infinitely more important in consulting, as receiving and acting on feedback quickly could change the course of your career.
In This Week’s Blog Post, We’ll Explore 3 Reasons Why Continuous Feedback Is Important:
#1 Practice what you preach – As a consultant, you’re providing support to the client to resolve their issues and aid growth: what about your own growth?
#2 Motivation comes from action and inspiration – Action(s) can’t be taken without feedback
#3 Engage someone feeling detached – Consistently feeding back helps with engagement
Let’s dive into each of these:
#1 Practice what you preach
As consultants, it’s ingrained in us to be curious and question the way things have been done to achieve a better outcome.
But seldom do we apply this phenomenon in our own projects or on our teams.
Consistent, regular and timely feedback is a cheap and effective way of ensuring a growth mindset in the team. This isn’t just for the junior team members but applies to upward feedback too.
In the book Atomic Habits, James Clear mentions how “Habits are compound interest of self-improvement”. i.e., small changes lead to exponential growth.
Or to put it simply in a mathematical formula:
1% improvement daily, leads to 1.01365 improvements over a year. Or 37 times better than where you started.
#2 Motivation comes from action and inspiration
Let me explain what I mean here. For you to act/improve on something, you need to have some feedback.
Once you have received feedback, you can then create an action plan to address it; and once this has been addressed, it naturally leads to motivation.
This is a phenomenon that I recently learnt in the summary of a book “Motivation is a Myth”, that actually getting things done leads to more motivation as opposed to waiting for motivation to magically appear itself.
Getting feedback also leads to feeling inspired in ways you may not have originally thought of. All of us see life differently from each other and obtaining a perspective of someone else could help you feel elated and inspired.
#3 Engage someone feeling detached
This pandemic is a great example of how some people are feeling detached from their teams, co-workers and even families. Giving consistent feedback is a great way, to have a dialogue with someone and to help them become engaged again.
Engaging individuals in this way helps to improve working relationships and building trust between parties.
Knowing that if a co-worker produces great work, they’ll receive recognition for it and receive feedback.
In the same way, knowing that an error has been made will result in this becoming a noticeable action, in which feedback will be provided to correct course as it’ll help the individual remain engaged.
You’ll have noticed throughout this post, I haven’t referred to, whether this is positive or constructive feedback. And that’s because it doesn’t actually matter!
Continuous engagement to understand what is working and what could be improved are both great ways to accelerate growth, inspire and engage teams.
I hope this blog has been insightful and has helped answer some of your questions about feedback in consulting. If you’d like to be kept informed of more content like this, subscribe to my newsletter.