Republished from CEGE Connection Blog, February 23, 2021
“You laugh too loud. You smile too much. You need to wear makeup.
This is real feedback I received at different times in my career. Each was genuine, framed in behavioural change, and carried business rationale. As a career oriented young adult, I adapted.
You laugh too loud – it was “startling” and impacted customers. I was offered professional help. I conceded that now being aware, I would keep it in check – thank you for telling me.
You smile too much – apparently my smile made me appear flighty and insincere. This woman-to-woman feedback was offered …anonymously… via 360 feedback exercise. As I debriefed the feedback I learned the source and thus how I knew it was another woman – thank you for telling me.
You need to wear makeup. This led to a corporate paid professional coach who also guided me to “act like a woman, think like a man, work like a dog”. I was truly appreciative of the investment and feedback especially if this was going to hold me back from a corporate career – thank you for telling me.
Maybe, the world is starting to change? For reflection: leaders – feedback might last a lifetime; young people – feedback, regardless how hurtful and inappropriate it might be, can still have grains of value”.
Yvonne Thevenot, MBA(FS), Class of 1999
Change Management | Mentoring | Strategy Development & Implementation
#saturdaymorningmusings #feedback #leadershiplesson