Anyone that has worked with me in the past ten years knows how much I love pluses and deltas. If you are new to the concept, it is a review that takes place immediately following a project or event. This feedback falls into two categories...
Pluses...what worked well, what did we like, what are we proud of, what surprising good thing happened?
Deltas…what could we have done better, were there any errors we can learn from, how did the clients or participants respond, what could we do different next time?
I have to say that I feel this one habit is responsible for me continually progressing and improving.
But it matters how it is done.
1. REMOVE THE EMOTION
This is not about criticism, judgement or personal attacks...rather we remove the emotion and just take a look at what happened. It is powerful in teaching interns or other less outspoken staff how to give authentic and honest feedback…even to those in leadership positions.
2. EMPOWER OTHERS
As a matter of practice, I require that all of my interns and team members provide pluses and deltas for any project we work on or live event that they attend. In the beginning it takes a little adjustment, but after awhile it almost becomes second nature.
3. IMPLEMENTATION IS THE REAL MAGIC
Here is another important point, I not only receive good ideas from anyone involved in the process, but I take it a step further to actually implement the good ideas that I have received. That means the next time we work on an event or project, my team will have a chance to see their suggestions bearing fruit in the work we are doing. To be heard and know that your ideas make a difference, is so empowering for an intern or new employee.
So often we miss the opportunity to grow because it is hard to hear less than positive feedback from others. Granted, you want to make sure that the people you are working with generally have good intentions and are not there to be intentionally hurtful. But once you are in an environment where you can feel safe and know that you will get honest and helpful feedback, it's worth putting this strategy into practice.
My way is working with my team...but you can put this into practice with your coworkers, family and friends. Try it and let me know how it works for you.
Embrace the growth perspective and look for fuel to feed the process. If we are open to hearing honestly where to begin the improvements, then we have the capacity to continually grow, improve and progress.