The concept of feedback is an interesting thing.
Have you ever noticed that the majority of people and companies proclaim they want feedback from customers, employees and other stakeholders but many of them either ignore the feedback when they receive it or get angry about its content?
I’ve always been puzzled by that.
Do you want feedback or don’t you?
I’m going to concentrate some thoughts here on companies, businesses and organizations and not people in general. Although when it comes to entities, it really comes down to those people in management roles and how they respond to feedback.
Do they accept it? Do they act on it? Do they ignore it? Or do they respond in anger and in punitive ways when they don’t like what they hear?
The answers to those questions will determine the fate of a company in no time.
For example, a simple illustration of feedback is in the restaurant industry. And this comes in the form of reviews of customers’ experiences with a particular restaurant. That can include everything from how the food tasted, the quality of service they received, and the ambience in the establishment.
If a restaurant owner takes those comments to heart and acts on them – or at least ones that are legitimate concerns – and improves their operation, they are much better off for it. The owners that consistently pay no attention to those concerns are the establishments that are eventually doomed to die.
Companies are similar in nature. So many companies puff out their chests and announce to their employees that they have an open door policy with their management.
“Come in any time and tell us your thoughts.”
Ya right. I’ve seen over and over again how this so-called policy really exists in name only but not in reality and practical terms. Like the restaurant industry, the businesses that nurture and encourage feedback from their stakeholders – and primarily their staff and business colleagues – are the ones that eventually strive and do well.
The ones that don’t, effectively kill communication within and that is a dangerous road to pave for the future. Communication is the key.
Lack of effective communication kills companies. It kills the soul of companies first, leading to their physical deaths eventually.
And let’s make no mistake about this. It starts from the top in any organization. Leadership in this area emanates from the top gun. The CEO or President must lead by example. They must allow the lines of communication within their organizations to be open from top to bottom AND from bottom to top.
They must welcome and encourage feedback within their organizations. And they must take that feedback seriously and with respect.
If you don’t communicate well as a company, it is inevitable that you will fail. I have no doubt about that.
Success and lack of communication within a company don’t equate. It’s as simple as that.
(Connect with me if you would like to learn more about how I can help your company more effectively communicate with all your stakeholders)