Mon • Apr 15th, 2013 • by Tom Nees • Comments 4
Giving motivational feedback is one of the most valuable and difficult skills that leaders and followers bring to one another.
A couple of thoughts -
In a March 2013 Harvard Business Review article, “Do You Play to Win—or Not Lose” Halvorson and Higgins write about the motivational differences between “promotion-focused” and “prevention-focused” people.
Promotion-focused people play to win.
You’ll recognize promotion-focused people as those who are comfortable taking chances, who like to work quickly, who dream big and think creatively.
Prevention-focused people play it safe.
Prevention-focused people worry about what might go wrong. They are vigilant and play to not lose, to hang on to what they have, are risk-averse, work slowly and meticulously.
The research by Halvorson and Higgins indicates that -
Promotion-focused people tend to increase their efforts when a supervisor offers them praise for excellent work, whereas prevention-focused people are more responsive to criticism and the looming possibility of failure.
A brief online assessment is available to identify where you are on the promotion/prevention continuum.
2. Adapting feedback for personality differences.
In her book, “Words That Change Minds: Mastering the Language of Influence,” Shelle Rose Charvet suggests that by listening closely to language we can learn to understand, predict and even influence the behavior of those around us.
The iWAM (inventory of work, attitude and motivation), based on her research is an excellent self-assessment to identify motivational tendencies in others and ourselves. (Since the assessment is only available through certified practitioners please contact me for further information.)
Through active listening we understand what motivates people and learn to adjust our feedback to their personalities and situations.
We are constantly giving and receiving feedback – at work, at school, at church even at home with marriage and parenting.
My friend Bob Sloan, recently retired from a lifetime of leadership in hospital administration, told me he learned how to give motivational feedback from his high school speech teacher. After a speech she would tell him something he did well and then offer suggestions for improvement.
Maybe it is as simple as that.