By Anna Nord. May 31, 2017.
Learning how to read maps at the Boulder Journey School
The ability to give and receive feedback is the essence of sustainability.
The natural world is constantly changing. An organism that continues to flourish and live in harmony with its surround ecosystem, despite ongoing transformations, embodies sustainability. Like other organism in nature, humans are able to adapt and respond to change by giving and receiving feedback (Herzlich 2016). Feedback is a dynamic dialog between yourself, other people, and the environment.
Self-awareness and emotional intelligence: Internal Feedback
Open and honest communication with yourself is the first step in building trust with others. Today, it's common to use the phase emotional intelligence to describe a person's ability to understand what triggers different feelings, to be aware of those situations, and to respond accordingly. A person, who is in tune with their own emotions, is aware of their vulnerabilities, as well as their strengths. This consciousness supports an internal feedback loop and allows them to change their behavior and adapt to different circumstances. Tanmay Vora believes that self-awareness is ubiquitous amongst all collaborative leaders. It builds confidence and helps leaders communicate common goals and inspire the collective (Vora 2014).
Mentorship and Management: External Feedback
The success and sustainability of group is contingent upon everyone's ability to communicate clearly with each other. Communication can often breakdown when giving or receiving feedback. It's common for people to misinterpret feedback and mistake it for criticism, especially when communicating across cultures. Different cultures use different tones and language when giving feedback. Some cultures like the Dutch are direct and to the point and other cultures sugar coat their feedback and dilute the message (Meyer 2015). When giving feedback, it's important to be culturally sensitive and focus on behavior and not the person (Petersen 2013).
The ability to receive feedback is sometimes more difficult than sharing your opinion with others. If you take it personally, it can feel like the other person is attacking you. However, feedback from others is what helps us work collaboratively with others to achieve our own goals. One of the best ways to get feedback is to build a trusting relationship with a mentor. A does not have to be older than you. Mentorship is about respect, trust and inspiration. Finding a mentor, who you feel comfortable sharing your vulnerabilities with, can be difficult, but that relationship is very beneficial in self growth.
Herzlich, Toby. "Life's Best Practice: Use Feedback Loops." Biomimicry for Social Innovation, 13 April 2016, https://bio-sis.net/use-feedback-loops-2/ . Accessed May 30, 2017
Meyer, Erin. "Giving Negative Feedback Across Cultures." INSEAD Leadership and Organisations -Blog, 16 Sept. 2015, https://knowledge.insead.edu/blog/insead-blog/giving-negative-feedback-across-cultures-4259. Accessed May 30, 2017
Petersen, Deborah. "Carole Robin: Feedback is a Gift: Seven tips for giving feedback to others." Standford Graduate School of Business, Career & Success, Leadership, Managment, 27 Nov, 2013, https://www.gsb.stanford.edu/insights/carole-robin-feedback-gift . Accessed May 30, 2017
Vora, Tanmay. " Indespensible Traits of a Collaborative Leader: Part 3." Insights and Sktechnotes on Leadership, Learning, ad Change!, 11 May 2014, http://qaspire.com/2014/05/11/indispensable-traits-of-a-collaborative-leader-part-3/ . Accessed May 30, 2017