“How did I do?”
“Did I connect?”
Which question do you more commonly ask yourself after you speak, teach, lead a meeting, talk to your staff?
A good leader is always evaluating… always seeking feedback to improve.
But those two questions above nuance a distinction that is critical in our motives for seeking feedback.
The first question is about you.
The second question is about them.
Just this past Sunday, I was hosting the services at one of our campuses. This was the first time I hosted at this campus and I was very attentive to my “performance” (I use quotes because I don’t love that word but it’s accurate for the context). My first reaction was to get feedback on how I “did”. Did I do okay? Did I say all the right things? Did I cover the correct content?
For the first few moments the stream of thought was all about me and how I performed.
And then… conviction. My questions were all wrong. Yes, I needed to evaluate my performance but my evaluation needed to be about how I impacted those I was communicating with. Did I connect with them? Did they feel heard and understood? Did they receive good information? Were they inspired? Did I help them see a glimpse of Jesus today?
Is the connection question your first thought when evaluating yourself as a communicator?