Monday, October 19, 2015

ComplaintsAndPushback

Leaders regularly deal with a duo of negative feedback loops.

One comes in the form of complaints (usually, but not always, originating from external stakeholders).  Complaints generally come from the end-users of your products or services. 

The other comes in the form of pushback (usually, but not always, originating from internal stakeholders).  Pushback generally comes from those within the organization charged with producing/delivering your products or services.  

While dealing with both is discouraging and de-energizing, leaders should view both as gifts.  What?  Yep, I said GIFTS.

In both instances, the people we serve (both those external to the organization and those internal to the organization) have taken the time to provide us feedback on stuff that "ain't workin' for them," for one reason or another.  

Here's how to unwrap those precious gifts:

  • Thank the complainer/pushbacker for taking the time to share their insight or opinion.
  • Ask them, gently, what alternatives/corrections might better serve their needs.
  • LISTEN carefully to those responses and thank them again for the input.
  • Bounce the suggestions off of the leadership team to determine whether they have merit, and whether they fit comfortably within your cost-benefit parameters.
  • Do what's best for the organization - either stick with the current plan, or alter it according to the suggestions offered by the complainers/pushbackers.  
Here's what NOT to do:  Ignore the complaints and/or pushback.  

The cost of ignore(ance) is quite high.  


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