Listen to the Highs and Lows
A simple feedback tool to understand what’s working and what’s not
This team feedback exercise is very effective to assess participants after a workshop or team session. Rather than asking for detailed feedback, people just focus on their highs and lows.
According to Nobel laureate and author of Thinking, Fast and Slow, Daniel Kahneman, we remember our peak moments and our most recent events. The highs and lows create a much bigger impact on our memory than anything that happens in between.
That’s why this exercise is so powerful––it can also be applied at the end of a regular meeting.
Each participant captures their highs and lows on singles post-its––one per each. One person at a time shares his/her highs and lows.
The team discusses areas of opportunities.
Once a workshop or meeting is finished, the team seats together––ideally in a circle.
People get 3-4 minutes to write two posts-its––one represents the high and another the low.
Everyone can choose what aspect they want to focus on. The highs and lows can be about their personal experience, the content, their emotions, the learnings, or team dynamics.
Once everyone is finished, they share their respective highs and lows aloud–one at a time.
Collect the Post-its on a wall––one column for the highs and another for the lows.
Once all post-its are collected on a wall, ask some questions to help the team reflect. What are the common themes? Why do you think most people find XX part difficult? What would you do differently next time? Is this the first time you felt x…?
Before you finish the session, the team should commit to a couple of behaviors they want to improve.
Choosing only one makes people on both the most and least significant moments.
This exercise is more effective when participants focus on their personal experience rather than on others. Self-improvement is more effective when people can realize–and reflect on ––their feelings, the behaviors they resisted/ embraced, or what they learned.