15 Reasons To Ignore Feedback

Most people aren’t qualified to give you feedback. At least it seems that way.

two fingers

You’re feedback is insightful, caring, and helpful. But, their feedback is irrelevant, uncaring, and confusing.

Your feedback is right, but, surprisingly, their feedback is wrong.

15 reasons to minimize or ignore feedback:

  1. You just don’t give a damn.
  2. They don’t understand you.
  3. They don’t accept you as a person.
  4. You have more experience.
  5. They don’t appreciate the pressures and stresses you feel.
  6. They have a bad attitude.
  7. You’re more successful..
  8. They have their own problems.
  9. You’re older and wiser.
  10. Your title suggests they should listen to you, but you don’t have to listen to them.
  11. They have selfish reasons for giving feedback.
  12. They’re abrupt, even rude.
  13. You’ve already arrived.
  14. You don’t have time.
  15. They’re wrong.

Strategies for ignoring or avoiding feedback range for reasonable to ridiculous. The bottom line is, if they can’t walk on water, you don’t have to listen.

Why are you a genius when giving feedback, but they are idiots when they give it?

5 ways to receive feedback:

  1. Start with thank-you, always.
  2. Don’t say, “But.” Go with, not against.
  3. Could I have some time to think this over? (If it’s hard to take.)
  4. Could you give examples?
  5. What behaviors would make me a better leader?

Interpretation or observation:

Feedback typically begins with interpretation. Someone says, You’re angry, aggressive, uncaring, or dragging your feet. The words you just read are interpretations and conclusions.

Useful feedback begins with observation, not interpretation. “I notice you frown when you speak to employees.”

“You lean back with your arms crossed during meetings. You seem detached or arrogant.” (Observation first. Interpretation second.)

We argue over interpretations. Its better to ask for observation and illustration. “What am I doing, specifically, that makes you think I’m uncaring or detached?”

What makes feedback hard to take?

How can leaders give effective feedback?

This post is inspired by, “Thanks for the Feedback,” by, Douglas Stone and Sheila Heen.