The following is a recent blog post from marketing and business guru Seth Godin that I think has direct application to training.
There are only three reasons to really chew someone out for something they did, only three reasons to have an emotional tantrum, to use cutting language and generally make them feel lousy:
1. You want them to never do it again.
2. You want them to stop doing it right now.
3. You feel upset about the change and taking it out on the person who took action makes you feel better. First clue, “he deserved it!”
Can we agree that the third reason is selfish and there are almost certainly better responses if your goal is one or two?
I had to look up the word Excoriated, which means to denounce or berate severely or flay verbally.
If you have been following this blog for a while you will know that I agree completely with the Godin’s post and his summation statement.
Giving someone a severe ass chewing to make yourself feel better is highly unprofessional. We have likely all done it, but that does not make it right. It is still unprofessional and counter productive as a trainer.
If you are doing it for one of the first two reason, which is usually the case, find a better way. The purpose of the feedback is to change behavior through learning, not to make the person feel like crap for something they did. Feeling like crap because you got your ass chewed out seldom results in a long term positive change in behaviour.
P.S. If you would like to learn a better way consider attending the Excellence in Training Course in June.
Thought Leader, Speaker, Trainer, Author
President of Winning Mind Training – Leading the fight against mediocrity through Life’s Most Powerful Question – What’s Important Now?
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