Mar 8, 2021

Good and better - short actionable feedback

Continuous learning and improving is one of my key values. And to maximize the learning and follow-through with tiny improvements, I feed on feedback.

The rules I use for feedback are simple:

  • Do it instantly (so not to forget anything)
  • Keep it brief and actionable (so that I/we will work it with it)

My best formula for any feedback (strategic workshops, Scrum events, personal week review) is "Good/Better":

  • Use "Good" for anything that was good
  • Use "Better:" for anything that can be improved
  • Write a full sentence after, so you can understand again later
  • Make "Better" actionable with one specific idea for improvement
  • Don't forget "Good", it's easy to forget what worked well

Here's an actual feedback I wrote down recently about my current personal OKRs:

  • Good: I have both committal and aspirational objectives
  • Better: Focus on 2 instead of 3 weekly key results

Limiting all feedback on two categories takes off a lot of mental load and increases the probability to actually capture feedback. The magic sentence is: "Just one pair of good/better", so it gets "Ah, that was a very exhausting workshop. … But I can write down just one pair of good/better". Or with a colleague: "Let's just take 3min after the event and write some good/better's". More often than not I will end up with a long list of observations once I got over the mental hump to actually write down my feedback.

Categories: Product Productivity