Updates from February, 2014 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Eugene Chan 1:40 am on February 13, 2014 Permalink |  

    What Questions should I ask my direct reports in giving me feedback? 

    I’ve been at my job for exactly one year and I’ve asked for one-on-one meetings with my team (there are three members) to give me feedback on how I can be a better manager.

    I’m looking for ways to improve, whether I’m addressing things that they need or that the team needs. All the team members were in place when I joined and from my point of view, I’ve worked pretty well with them. I do feel like I’ve built a level of trust with each of them.

    I’ve specifically asked for it to be outside of the performance review process (not that I have anything against it, I just don’t usually find them very helpful), this is more informal, hopefully honest, and in the spirit of taking in feedback and improving my role as their manager.

    So with that: do you have suggestions for questions or framing for my meetings?

    • Dana 1:50 am on February 13, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      This is the question I’d want my bosses to ask me:

      1.What’s the one thing I could be doing to make your life/ job easier?

      I could go on a tangent about all the different areas I need more support and clearer communication in but this makes you focus on the thing that’s most prominent in your mind. And it sounds nice – like you are taking ownership of your piece to the puzzle and you want to help them.

    • Natalie 2:46 am on February 13, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Dana beat me to it. I think she nailed it. I like “one thing” questions because they almost force the person to come up with something. And if there’s a list, it gives them the opening to begin the diatribe. You could also ask for input on what they consider to be the most effective management approach for them personally, or to think back on the best supervisor they ever had, and what made that person so great.

    • Eugene Chan 6:48 pm on February 13, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Great suggestions! I had a question along the same line, but not for 1 thing, That is a better question. So thanks @dana and @natalie!

  • Brooking 6:49 am on January 9, 2014 Permalink |  

    Hey everyone – we’re on for the 14th from 3-5 at PolicyLink in downtown Oakland (Marie won’t be able to join/host that day unfortunately). TOPIC: designing for high performing networks! PolicyLink is walkable from 12th St Bart at 1438 Webster St, Oakland, CA 94612. Eugene if there’s any info we should know for arrival/where to meet please share with the group! In attendance for sure we’ll have EEK & Eugene Chan, myself & Rebecca. @jessausinheiler ? @dana? @natalie @renee @anna341bc @lauren @amy you are welcome to join as well!

  • Lauren 1:35 am on November 7, 2013 Permalink |  

    This is a long awaited post for me! Hello fellow bootcampers!

    My name is Lauren Rodriguez and I was part of the Changemaker bootcamp training earlier this year with the fabulous @renee, @natalie and @anna341bc. Over the last couple of weeks,@anna341bc and I have been practicing changemaker bootcamp exercises on our own at the lovely Jazz Café in Downtown Berkeley (sometimes there live music!). We practice on Fridays- a great day for the both of us and meet half way between our homes in El Cerrito and Oakland. We decided to practice together for various reasons. For me, it was that I had reached my yearly professional development training budget at my org, having recently gone through Rockwood’s Art of Leadership.

    My bootcamp project is geared around a research publication project for my organization, having been tasked with conducting the initial research and analysis. And my goals are to practice my critical thinking, synthesis and interview skills. Having this project in mind, practicing with Anna has been a great experience. Anna and I are both women of color and our workouts have been a very safe space for me to open up about parts of my professional growth aspects that I want to work on. Elements of our bootcamp sessions have been tailored to discussing issues that are particularly relevant and challenging for us as we work out such as identifying power/group dynamics in the room. We have also created the space to share stories about some similar struggles and have practiced having difficult conversations throughout our work-outs.

    One of the biggest learning edges during our initial work outs with Anna has been to practice and weighing the pros and cons of having a difficult conversation with my management team at work. Anna and I both bring a racial lens to our work and this has been incredibly empowering for me. I am having this difficult conversation on Friday. Thanks @marie for sharing your difficult conversation since the theme is overlapping and it was helpful to read what works for you to build up that courage!

    A reflection so far is realizing how much more confident in my work I have grown since the last bootcamp round. In the first bootcamp round, I voiced a concern about being the “youngest person is the room”. Working with Anna has really helped me understand the value that I bring to the table and become more confident in my skills as a researcher- and having faith that I AM capable! For me, working together in a pair has a deep value since you get to dig deep earlier.

    I hope to post every week of our work ours from here on out! Thanks to all of you for sharing your experiences and tools! Reading these have been very beneficial to me!

    • Jessica 2:32 am on November 7, 2013 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Lauren, my name is @jessausinheiler & I’m part of the latest class of bootcampers. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on the blog — at our last bootcamp (was it just yesterday??!!) we talked about wanting to connect with previous bootcampers, so it was fortuitous to see your post pop up in my mailbox.

      I can certainly identify with being young and being colorful. I too have appreciated being in an environment (bootcamp) where both of those things — but particularly the former — are valued. And I’ve also appreciated speaking openly of power dynamics, as it’s made me more aware of the power that we all have.

      Anyways, post on and keep us posted on Friday’s conversation

    • Renee 12:51 am on November 8, 2013 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      It is so awesome that you and Anna are practicing together, Lauren! I’m impressed with both of your follow through and its really fun to come back to this space and realize how much it has grown! Congratulations on building that courage. I’m so curious about your experience with Rockwood after our discussions about it. Feel free to ping me offline if you don’t want to post here.

  • Eugene Eric Kim 12:32 am on November 5, 2013 Permalink |  

    Looking forward to our last bootcamp session tomorrow and the last session of 2013! Don’t forget, we’ll be doing tea at Samovar right afterward. Looks like @natalie will be joining us!

    See you all tomorrow afternoon.

    • Jessica 7:32 pm on November 5, 2013 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Okay team, two things:
      1) Check out this link from BBC today: http://www.bbc.com/capital/story/20131104-making-meetings-matter… and this is also a hot topic of discussion at my client these days… how to make best practices spread?! Eugene, could we link to your resources on the BBC site?
      2) Had a productive conversation with my colleague Jeremy about our work/professional relationship, workplanning, and sharing information. I felt empowered, partly because our conversation revealed a problem he was dealing with that I could help solve. He was thankful that I named the problem and took interest in addressing it.
      More when we meet! Looking forward!

      • Eugene Eric Kim 10:59 pm on November 6, 2013 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        Thanks for sharing, @jessausinheiler! Everyone has write access to the Resources document, so feel free to add away! And so glad that your conversation with Jeremy was productive.

  • Eugene Eric Kim 4:06 pm on July 15, 2013 Permalink |  

    I’m interrupting today’s regularly scheduled attempt at thought-provoking changemaker wisdom to announce that today is @natalie‘s birthday! Wish her a happy birthday if you get the chance.

    Hope you all had a wonderful weekend. Looking forward to seeing all of you on Wednesday, our last session of this bootcamp.

    • Renee 4:37 pm on July 15, 2013 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Happy Birthday Natalie!! It has been a real pleasure to get to know you a bit through Bootcamp. Hope you have a wonderful day!

    • Anna 6:19 pm on July 15, 2013 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Happy Happy Birthday Natalie. Hope you have a wonderful time celebrating 🙂

    • Anna 6:20 pm on July 15, 2013 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      It worked :-), Eugene. 🙂

      Thanks for the tip 🙂

    • Lauren 10:25 pm on July 15, 2013 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Have a wonderful birthday Natalie! Big hug!!

    • Natalie 3:53 am on July 16, 2013 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Thanks, everybody! I’m feeling the love. 😉

    • dana 2:48 am on November 5, 2013 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Happy birthday Natalie! i miss you very much!

      • Natalie 3:50 am on November 5, 2013 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        Dana! Nice to hear from you! Are you going to happy hour tomorrow?

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