Feedback: Friend or Foe?

feedback-discussFeedback is a fact of leadership. Every leader is aware everyone around them has an opinion about the decisions and actions of a leader. That’s why a leader must be “thick-skinned” or they will never accomplish much. Too often, leaders run and hide from feedback rather than look for and even solicit honest and sincere feedback.

For a leader to grow, feedback must be seen as a welcomed friend not a fearful foe!

In the church, there are a number of ways to proactively seek feedback. Because I get the opportunity to preach the same message multiple times each Sunday at VALLEY Christian Church, after our first gathering, I invite 5-6 people into my office and we evaluate the message together. This practice, over the years, has been an incredible tool and help in my growth as a communicator. In the previous two posts (“How To Communicate Vision”, part 1 & 2), I shared the importance of communicating vision, feedback is the “next step” a leader will take to ensure they have effectively communicated that vision.

Recently, we hosted a dinner at our church for 70+ people, for the express purpose of inviting feedback. Each table was given three critical questions to discuss and answer (give feedback). It was an awesome and humbling experience for me, as well as all of the leadership at VALLEY. Below is a sample of the compiled feedback we received from 70+ adults in attendance to the future vision of our church:

What inspires you most about being a part of “The VALLEY Family”?

1) The genuine relationships and community in the VALLEY Family.

2) The friendly environment where ALL people feel welcome and excited to bring their friends.

3) Watching people who attend VALLEY transformed by the power of the Gospel.

4) How VALLEY is a place where relationships, with God and others, are emphasized.

What do we need to continue to do in order to reach the unchurched in our community?

1) Keep our Sunday experience current and relevant.

2) Continue to have outreach campaigns that appeal to those in the church and the community.

3) Keep our standard of excellence and consistency with the children’s and student’s ministries.

4) Consistently have events that are exciting and encourage those who are unchurched to attend.

As Dr. Greg discussed the future vision, what jumped out and has you the most excited about where we are planning on going?

1) We are excited that VALLEY is fulfilling the Great Commission by going out into our community to reach the unchurched.

2) The new volunteer positions that provide opportunities to serve others and partner with VALLEY.

3) The generosity of those who came before us, as we will continue to be generous and expand our investments in our community, our country/world and future generations.

4) Not going into debt to get a new building because we are focused on people instead of property.

You may be wondering, “What do you do after receiving this much feedback”? That will be the subject of my next post, “Feedback FaceTime“.

QUESTIONS:

1. Leader, how are you regularly and consistently inviting input and feedback from those you lead?

2. “Leaders know feedback is an inevitable fact. Invite it and your heart will be prepared to hear it. If not, you’ll always be defensive & run away from growth.” Agree or Disagree? Why?

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