I have a love/hate relationship with asking boomerang questions. You know the kind: questions that invoke open criticism of yourself. We just finished up the debriefing session that is always the hardest for me. We gave the interns time to share any suggestions they have for improving the program. We told them we wouldn't defend ourselves or even explain why things were done the way they were (unless we felt it was absolutely imperative ). So the interns had full permission to just say what they disliked about their year.
I love it and I hate it all at the same time.
I love it because I always want to get better at what we do. I want next year's interns to have an even greater experience than this year's. I want to learn from our mistakes and make things more effective as we go forward. I also just love giving someone the "ok", and making them feel comfortable enough, to share this level of honest feedback.
I hate it because it's hard to hear that sort of honesty about how I've failed. It's difficult to not defend or explain myself, but to simply listen for the issue that underlies what's actually being said. I hate it because I find it so hard not to take this kind of criticism personally.
In the long-run, I know that this morning's challenging conversation will lead to an improved internship program. This is the sort of thing that makes me a better leader. Even if I hate it while I love it.
What do you have a love/hate relationship with?