In my strategy, which I’ve dubbed the NORMS method, the aim is to maintain objectivity in feedback, steering clear of personal biases. Here’s the essence of the approach:

  • Not an interpretation: Concentrate on describing the action observed rather than speculating on the reasons behind it.
  • Observable: Direct attention to precise behaviors or outcomes that can be witnessed directly.
  • Reliable: Ensure that the observation is corroborated by at least two independent witnesses.
  • Measurable: Describe actions or outcomes using concrete data, avoiding vague qualifiers such as ‘all the time’ or ‘constantly’.
  • Specific: Provide an intricate account of the incident, including the participants, location, timing, context, and sequence of events.

Applying this methodology transforms subjective statements like ‘John is always late’ into objective, fact-based observations such as ‘John arrived late to the leadership meeting three times last week.’ This shift not only prevents emotional responses and overstatements but also minimizes the likelihood of defensive reactions when feedback is presented

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