Book Review: The Feedback Fix

Author: Joe Hirsch
Published: 2017, Rowman & Littlefield
ISBN: 9781475826593

What is it about?

The Feedback Fix is about reinventing how we approach traditionally giving feedback in the past tense and review performance. Typically performance reviews are dreaded by the feedback giver and the receiver alike. The giver fearful of how the giver will react to negative reviews and the receiver fearful of the negative review they can no longer control.

The Feedback Fix encourages people to do their feedback in the future tense. This way the receiver leaves a ‘feedforward’ meeting now imagining what they look like once they’ve progressed rather than worrying about what went on before.

About the author

Joe Hirsch is the Managing Director Semaca Partners. Joe specialises in helping teams apply behavioural science to strengthen the way leaders train, support and empower their teams.

Joe has worked with Fortune 500 companies and NFL teams among others. He also does Keynote speaking for TEDx and writes for publications such as the Wall Street Journal.

Who is it for?

This book is for anyone in a position to give advice or direction frequently, employers, managers, coaches and indeed analysts.

Although sporting examples are limited, it is still very applicable to analysts and coaches who deliver feedback.

What did I take from it?

It was actually a very long read for a short enough book! Reason being, as you read it, you are constantly evolving your own ideas about how to improve how you feedback.

The main ideas I took from it is primarily the idea of feedforward. Why give feedback on something, that the person who did it can’t fix? It makes more sense to give feedforward where the receiver uses information to improve how they work the following time.

My secondary taking from the book was on how to apply feedforward. Using ‘plussing’ techniques as an example where the person giving the feedback would ask questions like ‘what would it look like if we…’ instead of ‘I think we should…’, allows for the receiver to still take ownership of the idea as they explore and explain that idea in their head.

Should I buy it?

In short – Yes. It’s a book that makes you imagine yourself being better using these techniques for the benefit of yourself and the people you are delivering feedback to.

The downside of the book like a lot of these single message books is that the theme can become repetitive with the stories behind it, just a regurgitation of the same point in a different setting although there is additional layers added onto that message through out the book.

Overall: 4/5


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