The next time you need to give someone feedback or confront an issue, ask permission, “Is this a good time to talk about what happened?” If they say it’s not, check in later or let them know when you plan to talk with them tomorrow.
By asking permission, you communicate that you care and their receptiveness is important. If someone is frustrated, angry or closed off, anything you share will not be seen as helpful and the change you were hoping for is less likely to happen.
We want our communication to be received and acted upon or we wouldn’t offer it. Making sure it happens when we are all embracing a growth mindset improves the likelihood that the team benefits from our observations, direction, and feedback.
Andy Worshek, my former shipmate and Sonar Chief on USS Santa Fe, says “When David and I served together and he or my department head asked me about the best time to discuss feedback or the need to tackle a concern, their approach made me feel valued. I felt like they cared and were invested in my observations. I knew that my contributions mattered and that I would have ownership of the response to the feedback.”
Valued employees give greatness freely. Remember, the next time you need to share information, good or bad, ask first. You’ll be pleased with the responses you receive when your team knows that you care and place value on their contributions.