Juan R Labrada

On Giving Negative Feedback

(Taken from Mike Cohn mail list) One of my favorite frameworks for providing negative feedback is the CEDAR™ model from Anna Wildman. CEDAR is an acronym for the steps involved in providing feedback.

Context: Set the context for the person. Describe the problem, the role their behavior had in creating or exacerbating the problem, and the effects it had.

Examples: Provide one or more examples to illustrate the behavior. Don’t go overboard here. One example may be enough but never give more than three.

Diagnosis: Talk to the person about why they behaved as they did. My favorite approach is simply to ask, “What caused you to act that way?” or perhaps “What caused you to say that?”

Action: Ask the employee what actions they will take next. This could be aimed at correcting an existing problem or preventing it happening again. Get the person to state clearly what their goal is and name specific actions they’ll take to achieve it.

Review: End a discussion by establishing a plan to review the person’s progress. Ask them when you should meet again. Before then, observe the person. Look for an opportunity to praise them sincerely for any progress they’ve made.

Things don’t always go well and people don’t always behave as they should. In these cases, you’ll need to rise to the hard challenge of providing negative feedback to succeed with agile.

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