Tuesday, January 25, 2011

How To Give Better Feedback

Be Direct With Your FeedbackThere’s only one way to take “This work sucks.” There are many ways to take “I’m not sure this is doing it for me.” And while the former may not be good feedback, per se, it certainly leaves no question that there’s a problem that needs addressing. Perhaps you can find a less blunt way to get your displeasure across, but leave it nice and clear. Personally, I’d rather have the clarity and I can deal with the bluntness, but I’ve been told I’m an asshole.

It’s Not ArtFirst rule of design feedback: what you’re looking at is not art. It’s not even close. It’s a business tool in the making and should be looked at objectively like any other business tool you work with. The right question is not, “Do I like it?” but “Does this meet our goals?” If it’s blue, don’t ask yourself whether you like blue. Ask yourself if blue is going to help you sell sprockets. Better yet: ask your design team. You just wrote your first feedback question.

Mule, a design studio in San Fran, lays out a few ways to give proper design feedback. Some of the things may only apply to design, but IMO most of the post can trascend to any part of our daily work lives. You can read the entire list at their website here.

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