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10 Reasons Why Feedback Isn’t Given

  1. Fear of Negative Reactions: Many hesitate to give feedback due to fear of how it will be received. Concerns about inciting defensiveness, damaging relationships, or hurting someone's feelings can deter people from offering helpful guidance.   Most people view feedback as negative.   We can provide someone with positive feedback or praise.  

  2. Lack of Training: Many individuals are not naturally skilled at giving effective feedback. Without proper training, people may worry about giving feedback incorrectly—either too harshly or too vaguely—resulting in misunderstandings or lack of action.  

  3. Cultural Norms: In some organizational or societal cultures, feedback isn't a common practice. There may be norms against challenging authority or pointing out areas for improvement, especially if it involves criticism of peers or superiors.  

  4. Time Constraints: Feedback requires time for both preparation and delivery in a thoughtful, developmental manner. Busy schedules and high workloads can make it challenging to find the time to provide meaningful feedback.  

  5. Perceived Low Benefit: Some may underestimate the value of feedback, especially if previous attempts haven't led to noticeable improvements. This perception can reduce the motivation to invest time and effort into giving feedback.  

  6. Fear of Conflict: Feedback can sometimes lead to defensiveness, disagreements or conflict, especially if the receiver is not open to it. The potential for conflict can make people reluctant to give feedback.  

  7. Lack of a Feedback Culture: If an organization or group doesn't have a strong culture of feedback and accountability, individuals may not be encouraged—or even feel permitted—to provide it. Establishing a culture where feedback and accountability is expected and valued requires effort from all levels, especially leadership.  

  8. Uncertainty About Effectiveness: Some people might be unsure about how to give feedback effectively or doubt their ability to provide feedback that can genuinely help others improve. This uncertainty can lead to avoidance.  

  9. Previous Negative Experiences: If someone has had negative experiences with giving or receiving feedback in the past, they may be more hesitant to engage in the process again.  This is most often the case as most people are not effectively trained or given the tools to give good feedback (see item 2).  

  10. Misconceptions About Feedback: There might be misconceptions that feedback is always critical or negative. This view overlooks the positive aspects of feedback, such as reinforcement of good behaviors and recognition of achievements, making people less inclined to give it (see item 1).


Understanding these barriers is the first step towards overcoming them. By addressing these issues directly, individuals and organizations can foster a more open and supportive culture where the giving and receiving of feedback are integral to growth and development.

Talent Authority’s Talent Academy for Leaders incorporates feedback into every module insuring that participants are well versed in giving feedback.   If your leaders need rock solid leadership training or your company doesn’t put value into feedback or accountability, Talent Authority can help.   Schedule time to speak to an advisor. 

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