Labstorm: Feedback is in the Air

Feedback mechanisms at airport security checkpoints, or the entrance of the World Bank, are inviting. The smiley faces clearly display a range of emotions easy to identify. The buttons themselves are just begging to be pushed. It’s visual. It’s intuitive. But does it effectively close the feedback loop?

3TT: Feeding the Feedback Loop

Habitat for Humanity partners with individuals and families to build or improve an affordable, decent place to call home. A family’s transformation may start with their home, but we believe it advances when they remain engaged in their community. We tested this theory using a grant from the Fund for Shared Insight to pilot a feedback loop project. During the course of the project, we tracked and encouraged community engagement in 12 neighborhoods across the country.

Can Feedback be Fun?

Sometimes, feedback doesn’t feel great. On a personal level, we’ve all had the experience of receiving tough feedback, blunt criticisms that were hard to hear. While there are strategies to deal with tough feedback, it can easily cause tension, or make us feel attacked or ostracized. And between government and citizens, feedback can be equally contentious and fraught.

3TT: Stories As Feedback

It’s hard to find a person who hasn’t been touched — directly or through someone they love — by a serious illness, aging, or the loss of a loved one. We all know these experiences but when you are in the middle of it, it’s easy to feel alone. You’re faced with big, emotional challenges you must figure out how to navigate for yourself.

3TT: Learning Agendas are Great Feedback Tools

At USAID LEARN we’re always looking for ways to improve effectiveness and efficiency of development outcomes. Our work with Collaborating, Learning and Adapting (CLA) has led to a new organizational tool: the “learning agenda.” They can be a powerful way for teams and organizations to respond to evidence gaps, generate new knowledge and apply that information to improve their work. Learning agendas create feedback loops.

Mind the Gap

Feedback is powered by faith in people. When you ask for feedback, whether one-on-one from a colleague or at scale from thousands of people you are seeking to serve, you believe that the person giving you feedback will help make your work stronger.