Constructive criticism, advice, pointers—whatever you call it, feedback can be a funny thing. Sometimes we want it and sometimes we’d prefer to stick our head in the sand. However, when it comes to your career, feedback can be a critical component for advancement. It is important to know how your boss, peers, colleagues, vendors and even customers perceive you. Do you know what words they use to describe you, your performance and your professional presence? If not, I suggest you find out soon.
Here are some tips that can get you started:
Make a list of the people you think can provide the most useful information. Include a cross section of people; peers, colleagues, current boss, former managers, direct reports, and people outside your company like vendors and customers.
Figure out exactly what you want to know and craft the questions so they are easy to answer.
Create a formal survey in e-mail or with a survey tool like Survey Monkey. Include an introduction explaining your goals for asking for feedback.
Give the participants a week to ten days to respond. Follow up with those who have not responded.
Send a thank you to everyone who participates.
Analyze the data and create an action plan to address the feedback.
Follow up with the people who participated and share your action plan.