The edge of good feedback

Angelica Sprocket lives next door. Her overcoat has pockets galore.*
(Quentin Blake)

If you begin and end with focus groups, all you’re going to do is what’s been done before.**
(Seth Godin)

I’ve just completed a two-day immersion exploring ways for building competence with complexity. The last participation for the twenty of us was to share in groups of four what we saw in each other in terms of power and edge – something to develop beyond our comfort zone.

The challenge, then, is not only to find our authentic voice but also to enlarge it.^

We will never know our reach unless we stretch.^^

The best kinds of feedback see both our unique contribution and how this can be grown, and it was quite something to see just how accurately this cohort of people had noticed things in one another even after only a couple of days.

We each are able to bring to others what they are not looking for, some way they have not thought of, a response they have not imagined.

Angelica Sprocket, our “pockets” contain all manner of things:

There’s a pocket for mice,
and a pocket for cheese
and a pocket for hankies in case anyone feels that they’re going to sneeze.
[…]
And in case anyone is thinking of dropping off to sleep, there’s a pocket for motor horns that go PAH-HEE-HAR-HAR and BEEP-BEEP.*

I don’t imagine our “pockets” will contain mice and cheese and hankies and motor horns, but they will be crammed with many wonderful things. What’s in your pockets?

(*From Quentin Blake’s Angelica Sprocket’s Pockets.)
(**From Seth Godin’s blog: The trap of listening to feedback.)
(^From Harriet Lerner’s The Dance of Connection.)
(^^From Chip and Dan Heath’s The Power of Moments.)

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