Demystifying Feedback

Demystifying Feedback:
Why it matters in diverse organizations

March 23rd, 2012

Practical Skills

Maribel Ledezma-Williams, Vice President, Global Leadership and Diversity, Goldman Sachs

Science Commentary

Katherine Phillips, Paul Calello Professor of Leadership and Ethics


"What is so hard about telling someone they just don't cut it?"

"You are evaluating me poorly, but no one ever told me I was not meeting expectations."

"Someone told me that when it comes to feedback, perception is often reality. How should I interpret this?"

Formal and informal feedback are central to assessing performance and ensuring the growth of professionals. Though essential, many people avoid constructive feedback, misinterpret it, or prefer not to give it. Complicating matters further are issues of diversity and inclusion that often make it harder for people to give and receive effective career building feedback. Come learn strategic techniques for giving and receiving impactful feedback with Professor Katherine Phillips, Professor of Management and Maribel Ledezma-Williams, Vice President, Goldman Sachs.

About the Speakers

Maribel Ledezma-Williams is the Vice President of Global Leadership and Diversity at Goldman Sachs. As a member of the Americas Leadership Team, she is responsible for developing regional diversity business plans, identifying priorities for diversity recruiting, overseeing external sponsorships and managing internal diversity initiatives. Maribel also serves as Senior Advisor to the firmwide Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Network and is responsible for LGBT initiatives for the Americas.

Katherine Phillips is the Paul Calello Professor of Leadership and Ethics at Columbia Business School. Her research addresses the value of diversity and the barriers that prevent society, organizations and especially work teams from capturing the knowledge, perspectives and unique backgrounds of every member. Professor Phillips' theoretical and empirical work has focused mainly on the small group processes and performance that are affected by diversity, but more recently her work has expanded to assessments of worth and status that intertwine with group composition to affect interpersonal and group outcomes. Professor Phillips received her PhD in Organizational Behavior from Stanford University's Graduate School of Business and joined the Columbia Business School faculty in 2011. Learn more about Professor Phillips