How feedback can help you
Gaining feedback is the best way to track your progress, learn and grow during your placement.
Gaining feedback is the best way to track your progress, learn and grow during your placement. It sheds light on the areas where you may need to improve and it also highlights your strengths and what you’re doing well. Feedback sessions can seem scary, and are often perceived as being demotivating. But they are key to your success during your placement and can greatly impact your career in the best way.
Let’s look at ways that you can approach feedback sessions to ensure they are a motivator and continue to help you.
Open to feedback
It is vital to enter a feedback session open-mindedly, ready to listen and learn. It is easy to take feedback personally, but it is an important part of doing your job and learning. Some things to keep in mind when you are entering a feedback session.
- Actively listen, like really listen to what you are being told before responding
- Take plenty of notes as it can be difficult to remember what you are being told in a feedback session and this provides you with the opportunity to reflect afterwards
- Ask for clarification, if you are unsure of the feedback you are being provided ask for a better understanding or examples so that you can learn from this
- Be open to change and to learn from the experience, it’s not uncommon to want to close up and ignore feedback, but it’s important to reflect on what you’ve been told and take the feedback on board.
- Listen to the positives, not all feedback sessions are bad, feedback sessions are also an opportunity to highlight what’s going well. Try not to focus on just the bad.
A feedback session can help boost your confidence as an intern. It helps you establish a mindset where you positively react to any feedback from your supervisor. This includes developing thick skin while receiving negative feedback that needs to be addressed, as well as staying humble while receiving positive feedback that needs to remain consistent.
Preparing for feedback sessions
Going into a feedback session without preparation is like turning up to an exam without studying. Feedback sessions are a two-way street and an opportunity for you to ask questions, or gain feedback on specific tasks, projects and situations.
Write down some things you think have gone really well over the week, month, and placement period (depending on when the session is) and what you learn in those situations. Also, write down anything you need further clarity on, are struggling or any challenges you are having.
Your supervisor will enjoy seeing you proactive and motivated to learn from this experience.
Recording minutes of your feedback session are crucial, your supervisor may do this and circulate it with you, but you can also do this for the. A record of the conversation provides you with the opportunity to go over the entire session and analyse areas of improvement and also ways to remain consistent in areas of strength. Writing down notes can help you remember key scenarios during the session and can enable you to stay focused on self-improvement and overall professional development. It also provides a benchmark to reflect on in future sessions.
Positively taking on board feedback during your placement and using it to enhance your skills and remain consistent, ultimately enables professional development. When feedback sessions go well, the vulnerability, honesty and trust that comes from those sessions can even help you build a positive relationship with your supervisor.