A format for Strengths Based Feedback

This is a format that we used when I was working with my Leadership Coach Stacey Sargent. I use it often and have found that it normally leads to an insightful, constructive discussion, and it’s so much more interesting than “what did I do well and what can I do better”.

Strengths based feedback:
(a) what do I do really well that I should capitalise on more, and never stop doing?
(b) If I shift one thing, that would be the biggest leverage point, what would I focus on?

Why do I like this format so much?

It still conforms to the effective feedback principles of strengthening confidence and increasing effectiveness.

I’ve found that in part (a), people often come up with things that you take for granted and “just do without thinking”, but actually, these are your super powers, you should embrace them and build on them. You  might also find that people point out reasons that they value you that you wouldn’t have even noticed or realised.

Part (b) is about what can you focus on to grow. I like the word “leverage”, to me it implies that sometimes the smallest adjustment can have the biggest difference. What is that one thing?  Maybe it’s some new behaviour that you haven’t shown before, maybe its building on something that you are already strong in, but taking it to the next level. Notice also that it doesn’t use the word ‘change’, but instead “shift”, which seems like a much more reasonable ask.

The other thing I love about this is it is written in the style of a conversation. Rather than writing feedback in a way for others to consume, it is written to the person you are giving feedback to. I feel it changes the tone of the feedback and becomes much easier to write and to consume.

Love to hear if you’ve used a format like this before and how you got on?