fear of feedback

4776 words 20 pages
Fear of Feedback by Jay M. Jackman and Myra H. Strober

Reprint r0304h

April 2003

HBR Case Study
Keeping to the Fairway

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Thomas J. Waite

First Person
Leading for Value

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Brian Pitman

Luxury for the Masses

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Michael J. Silverstein and Neil Fiske

Tipping Point Leadership

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W. Chan Kim and Renée Mauborgne

R&D Comes to Services: Bank of America’s
Pathbreaking Experiments

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Stefan Thomke

HBR Interview
Psychologist Karl E. Weick: Sense and Reliability

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Diane L. Coutu

The 2003 HBR List: Breakthrough Ideas for Tomorrow’s Business Agenda
Best Practice
Fear of Feedback

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Jay M. Jackman and Myra H. Strober

Tool Kit
Preparing
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Every time she tried to correct these problems, her male superiors put her off with a new series of excuses and challenges. The fact was, they had no intention of promoting her because they were deeply sexist. Accepting that fact would have required Angela to leave, but she chose instead to live in denial. Rather than recognize she was at a dead end, she did nothing about her situation and remained miserable in her job.
Brooding. Brooding is a powerful emotional response, taking the form of morbid preoccupation and a sense of foreboding. Faced with situations they feel they can’t master, brooders lapse into passivity, paralysis, and isolation.
Adrian, a training manager, brooded when his boss set forth several stretch goals for him. Believing the goals to be unrealistic, Adrian concluded that he

Jay M. Jackman is a psychiatrist and human resources consultant in Stanford, California. He can be reached at jayj@stanfordalumni.org. Myra H. Strober is a labor economist and professor at Stanford University’s School of Education, and by courtesy at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. She is also a human resources consultant and can be reached at myras@stanford.edu.
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couldn’t meet them. Rather than talk with his boss about this, he became desperately unhappy and withdrew from his colleagues. They in turn saw his withdrawal as a snub and began to ignore him. The more they avoided him, the more he brooded. By

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