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Ask a career coach

How to Receive Feedback at Work
Tips from a career coach

As constructive as some feedback may be, it can be hard to not take it personally or negatively. When we interpret it negatively it can kill our confidence, disengage us from our work and create more stress.  We get to choose how we interpret the feedback, so choose a way that best serves you and your happiness!


Here are my career coach tips for how to receive feedback well:


  1. Avoid getting defensive or combative. It can change the feedback conversation into an argument and cause awkwardness and bad blood between you and your boss.  It can also show them you're not ready to move on or take on additional leadership roles.

  2. Don't blame others.  It can damage your credibility and you can be seen as not taking responsibility for your actions and work. Take responsibility and be open to feedback to improve.

  3. Think of it as a win-win! Your boss is giving you feedback to help the company and your performance.  The win for you is that you have an opportunity to further develop your professional skillset.

  4. Be an active listener.  Ask questions that can fully help you understand how to utilize the feedback.

  5. Say thank you! Sometimes it's rare to get feedback, take it in stride and show gratitude that someone was willing to share information with you to help you do better.

  6. If you find the feedback unsettling and you're uncomfortable asking for advice from your boss about it, take the feedback and talk to a career coach or mentor about it.  Ask them for ways to utilize it.


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