I learned this one the hard way.
My first year out of grad school, I was invited to a symposium on self-directed work teams. In academia, I was well versed. I had little practical experience. The morning began with a senior executive sponsor setting the vision. After he spoke, I immediately raised my hand and challenged one of his major assumptions. I shared my “truth.” There was a palpable gasp from the crowd. He was embarrassed, as was I.
It doesn’t matter if my “truth” was true. I am not sure if I ever recovered with that executive.
I believe in telling the truth. I need to hear it. My boss needs to hear it. You boss needs to hear it.
Frame your truth in a way that can be heard.
Truth Packaged Well
Your boss is likely working on her leadership as much or more than you are working on yours. No matter how confident someone appears on the outside, they are dealing with insecurities, complex personal and family dynamics, and personal triggers just like the rest of us.
When done well, your boss will hear the feedback, and be grateful that you cared enough to take the time.
A few tips:
- Stay centered in your own intentions is this about you or about them, or the chemistry between?
- Ask– are they open to some feedback?
- Schedule some time, or look for an opportunity free from distractions
- Provide the feedback in private
- Come from a spirit of caring and helping
- Ask questions, try to understand her point of view
- Be prepared with specific examples
- Own the feedback, this is from you, you are not representing the rest of the group
- What would you add ?