Be a friend with feedback

james shone

By James Shone

‘Be a friend with feedback’ is the brilliant phrase that comes up in Matthew Syed’s book, ‘You are Awesome.’  We can find it very difficult to receive feedback, in fact I think it is unusual to find someone who is able to be a genuine ‘friend with feedback’.  But if we are lucky enough to find someone, and we take advantage of this we are likely to progress and improve more quickly than others.
At the time of typing  I am aware that teachers across the land will be utterly spent after a long and exhausting report writing season. In the same way pupils will also be tired after the long term. However, I encourage all parents and pupils to read their school reports carefully and adhere to any advice offered. As a teacher I used to suggest that the start of the holidays was a good time to read a report and draw out the positives and celebrate them.  Later in the holidays, after some rest and when we are in a stronger place to receive advice and possibly even criticism, we can go through our reports again. This makes a great strategy for the start of the new term.
Being a friend with feedback, in whatever walk of life we are in, is surely a wise way to live our lives. Constructive criticism must not be taken to heart and we must try to put into practice all that is being suggested. Then, as the growth mindset would suggest, true progress can be made.
I wish you all a very Merry Christmas!
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