Tuesday, June 3, 2014

LinkedIn's CEO Uses This Management Trick To Avoid Feedback Confusion

  • Any feedback from the CEO is designated into one of three categories: one person's opinion, strong suggestion, or mandate. Weiner, either in conversation or over email, will make the distinction about what kind of statement he's making to stay on the same page and avoid confusion.
  • One person's opinion means he's sharing "an anecdotal opinion where the input is to be treated as coming from just one user/customer/member of the team." His title and authority doesn't come into the equation with this kind of comment.
  • A strong suggestion carries greater weight than one person's opinion, but "still falls short of telling the team what to do." When Weiner offers a strong suggestion, he is drawing on his experience, but trying to provide the team with space to take risks. This type of feedback requires both sides to have an open mind.
  • A mandate is an actual order. "Issuing mandates when it makes sense can pay huge dividends by enabling the company to avoid prohibitively costly mistakes," Weiner writes. "However, issue them too often or without the right justification and there is no faster way to signal your lack of trust and demotivate the team. Try to use this category sparingly (if at all)."

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