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3 Books to Help you Improve your Feedback Skills

One of the best ways to increase your leadership skills is to get your hands on a really good book. After all, leaders are readers.

But how do you choose?

Where do you start?

Lucky for you, our team spends a lot of time reading. Whenever we prepare for things like Leader Lounge, Smart Savvy Academy Workshops, Coaching Training  or our team book club, we're reading really, really good books. 

Check out our top three picks on the art of feedback - how to give it, receive it, and have the courage to start a feedback conversation in the first place.



Thanks For The Feedback: The Science and Art of Receiving Feedback Well 

Authors: Douglas Stone & Sheila Heen

We swim in an ocean of feedback. Bosses, colleagues, customers—but also family, friends, and in-laws—they all have “suggestions” for our performance, parenting, or appearance.

We know that feedback is essential for healthy relationships and professional development—but we dread it and often dismiss it.

 Coauthors of the international bestseller Difficult Conversations, Stone and Heen have spent the last ten years working with businesses, nonprofits, governments, and families to determine what helps us learn and what gets in our way.

With humour and clarity, they blend the latest insights from neuroscience and psychology with practical, hard-headed advice. 




Radical Candor: Be a Kickass Boss Without Losing Your Humanity

Author: Kim Scott

From the time we learn to speak, we’re told that if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all. When you become a manager, it’s your job to say it--and your obligation.

Author Kim Scott was an executive at Google and then at Apple, where she worked with a team to develop a class on how to be a good boss. She has earned growing fame in recent years with her vital new approach to effective management, Radical Candor.

This simple framework can help you build better relationships at work, and fulfill your three key responsibilities as a leader: creating a culture of feedback (praise and criticism), building a cohesive team, and achieving results you’re all proud of.

Radical Candor shows managers how to be successful while retaining their humanity, finding meaning in their job, and creating an environment where people both love their work and their colleagues.




Leading With Emotional Courage

Author: Peter Bregman 

You have the opportunity to lead: to show up with confidence, connected to others, and committed to a purpose in a way that inspires others to follow. Maybe it’s in your workplace, or in your relationships, or simply in your own life.  

But great leadership—leadership that aligns teams, inspires action, and achieves results—is hard. And what makes it hard isn’t theoretical, it’s practical. It’s not about knowing what to say or do. It’s about whether you’re willing to experience the discomfort, risk, and uncertainty of saying or doing it.

In other words, the most critical challenge of leadership is emotional courage.  If you are willing to feel everything, you can do anything.

Leading with Emotional Courage coaches you to build your emotional courage, exercise it effectively, and create an environment in which people around you take accountability to get hard things done.



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Smart, Savvy + Associates are experts in helping marketing and communications leaders find people and develop teams that thrive and deliver inspiring results. As a people performance company, we specialize in finding marketing and communications talent in the Pacific North West. We also offer training programs for leaders and teams as well as options to become a certified coach or get coached.


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