You organize an event. Let’s say an internal one, like all-hands meeting, a workshop, or something else for the teams you work with. Afterwards you send around a feedback form. You get the answers and now you plan to analyse what people told you so that you can improve the next time.
Well, that was a no-brainer. That is what we all do.
You Are Not The Only One That Could Benefit From This Feedback
But there is one more thing that you should consider doing. Right after you received feedback you should publish all of it to all participants.
There are few reasons for doing so and all of them are backed-up by the following beliefs:
- transparency is good (if there are no reasons to hide something, you should make it transparent & accessible),
- if people give feedback they want to know that someone cares about what the think (and it is better to offer them this feeling sooner than later),
- it is good for everyone to understand what their colleagues think and value.
So now, to be more specific.
The Benefits Of Sharing Feedback
By publishing all the feedback you demonstrate courage. You prove that you are prepared to handle inconvenient truth and that you aren’t scared to acknowledge that the event you prepared wasn’t perfect.
Being transparent also means you trust people. You don’t hide anything from them. You also believe in their ability to provide civilized feedback.
Also, it helps the participants to better understand their colleagues. Let us say that X was disappointed with the second part of an event. They are convinced that their point of view is the only legit one – the fact that they didn’t like it, means that this part was no good. But – surprise, surprise! – now they see that only a minority shares his opinion. How could that possibly be?! Are they blind or stupid or what?! …hm, or maybe this part had some value after all.
By sharing this feedback you make participants feel like they somehow contribute to the event. I’m not sure how it works, but it makes people feel involved. It is a way of encouraging participants to make yet another step and maybe share some additional insights based on what they read. It is an invitation to join the organizers team. The event that was yours suddenly becomes ours. Magic.
Also, consider that there is no preparation needed to publish feedback provided by participants. The moment you stop collecting it, you can publish it with a few clicks. This means that participants will receive some information about this past even very soon after it happened. It is still fresh in their memory so when they read through the collected feedback they can truly relate to this. This is so very different from the polished reports you send after a few weeks. Usually the momentum is long gone and nobody cares anymore.
All in all – just do it. You’ll thank me later. 🙂
P.S. You need their consent, obviously.