When It Comes to Feedback: Be the G.O.A.T.

Beverly Flaxington is a practice management consultant. She answers questions from advisors facing human resource issues. To submit yours, email us here.

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Dear Readers,

This week I had a conversation with one of my long time (and most favorite) colleagues, Michelle Smith of New York City-based Source FA about coaching and feedback. Michelle gave me the title for this article, and I have to give credit where it is due. We were talking about the importance of providing direct and clear feedback to team members, but the struggle most advisors have to do this – and many employees have to accept it.

Michelle likens the process to any professional coaching arrangement in sports. If you think about the best of the best, the greatest of all time (GOATs) they continually take feedback and want it from their coaches. There is neither an assumption made that they have reached the pinnacle nor that there is no room for improvement. Professional sports figures strive for continuous improvement and also to understand where they are lacking and what small or big shifts will make the difference for them.

These are professional athletes making millions of dollars and often their names are associated with everything from sports drinks to sneakers. They are famous and they are rich and yet they want input about what they need to enhance, change, shift or do differently. It shouldn’t be any different in business. Talented, technical, credentialed people are smart and good at their jobs but don’t they also need and deserve consistent feedback to help them get better? And feedback can be positive, too.