Welcome to the Emotional Connectivity Podcast of Talent Management Academy!
Last week Rolf gave you some valuable tips in his last podcast how to give and receive feedback and what is required for easily putting it into practice. How were you doing, what kind of experience have you made?
It is often challenging to give constructive negative feedback, in particular to people that are dear to your heart or to your boss who is positioned at a higher hierarchical level than you. If you try to find out the positive intention behind the related behavior, you can take this for a feedback situation to ask in how far the behavior of the person responsible has been actually intended in the way that you observe.
The positive intention – what is the underlying purpose? At first we start from the general presupposition that all behavior is positively motivated. If someone behaves in a “problematic” way, rarely he or she acts in bad faith. If the person has the choice, he or she will behave differently because often the purpose is not obvious and the person is not aware of it. From an external view it makes sense to separate the intention from the behavior. The related behavior may be not very helpful in a certain context, but it does not impact basically the positive quality of the person responsible. A human being is not worthless because he or she does not behave in an appropriate way.
Let me give you an example. Of course, all of you know that smoking is bad for your health. Why do people smoke cigarettes? Because there is an inherent benefit for them, their behavior is positively motivated. A positive intention does not necessarily have positive effects. So what to do? Preventive rush for nicotine patches so that you can easier stand the process of giving up smoking? It’s true that your body may be resistive to the detox for some days, but even more important is what is actually ensured through smoking. Is it the fact of belonging to a group because in smoker’s corner they finally have the best discussions? Or does smoking mean relaxation in between your daily business or doing yourself good after work?
If you become aware of positive intention and underlying purpose, then it’s time to develop options. What could you do else in your break in between meetings or in the evening for relaxation? What kind of new routine could you learn instead? Test it and stay tuned… because people do not make wrong decisions, but do not have sufficient choices that are available for them.
Here’s my tip in the end: During this week observe behaviors of other people that irritate you. Find out what the related positive intention could be and practice constructive feedback. Happy learning!
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