Providing constructive feedback

February 10, 2015

Article by Pedro Bennett

Constructive Feedback


Providing constructive feedback could prove to be a grim task. It is particularly challenging when the party you are evaluating, in your opinion, requires moderate to extreme feedback and/or changes. I would like to share three tips that I have found to be effective and extremely beneficial when I need to get a message across.

Tip #1: Be Honest and Fair

Honesty and fairness goes a long way. By providing honest feedback you are preventing obstacles that may arise because of dishonesty, lies and biases. Fairness encourages you to weigh an individuals’ ability based upon the environment and supports honest feedback.

Tip #2: Provide Timely Feedback

Image you are looking forward to feedback from your instructor. You are enthusiastic at the same time, full of anxiety. Stress weighs heavily as you wait; however, you are dismayed because the feedback is not provided within a reasonable time. The behavior of the instructor encourages resentment and encourages disrespect. It shows a lack of diligence on the part of the instructor. We want to put our best foot forward. A best practice is to provide feedback within 24-48 hours, depending on what method and to what extent feedback is required.

Tip #3: Embed the Good with the Bad

Sandwich your feedback when providing feedback focus on the good or positives first. Sandwich the negative or needed improvements between the positive notes. Provide suggestions for improvement. Share encouraging words. Offer your student or client an opportunity to contact you if he or she has additional questions. It boils down to simple and effective communication. Remember that you are the evaluator and your opinions are suggestive and we all have room to improve and we all want to be seen in a positive light.

By Pedro Bennett

Venn Leadership and Consulting, LLC

Article by Pedro Bennett


Emotional Intelligence in Law Enforcement

Posted 12/01/15:                                                                              


Created 8/10/15


Emotional Intelligence in Law Enforcement


Entering the 21st century, technologically we are breaking the sound barrier. As one invention, tool or development is brought to the forefront, another one is knocking on the door. The balance between cognitive learning and emotional intelligence appears to have divorced, often times bringing about catastrophic results. The result is social unrest, capitalistic parasitism and socialistic dogma, which brings us to what role does law enforcement play in the scheme of social transformation in the 21st century.

Three roles of law enforcement officers are


1. Keep the peace through enforcing the laws
2. Educate the public
3. Provide mediation


If law enforcement officers are not properly prepared, due to change in norms, new legislation, lack of information, literacy or mental fog, the officer’s ability to resolve an issue among citizens is hindered. Like educators, law enforcement officers must have excellent communication skills. They must act as radars or receivers, listening and keeping up with current events, whether domestic or international. Law enforcement officers must juggle logic and emotional intelligence which, in a stressful situation, may be challenging as officers must be spontaneous and direct.

The understanding of emotional intelligence allows the officer to manage his or her emotions as well as others in a logical manner. An officer uses his or her ability to assess a situation by filtering information, morals, local, state and federal laws and policies while attempting to keep all parties safe. By monitoring ego, biases and emotions, a path is cleared to view the true essence of an issue or problem. Officers must be attentive to race, religion, gender, political and culture differences. They must embrace awareness, in an attempt to understand how their emotions could hinder their innate ability to rationalize or make the best judgment.


As officers are trained to pay close attention to other’s emotions, officers should also be trained to monitor their own emotions. By understanding choice, cause and effect, disposition and resolution, the officer is better equipped to recognize and monitor his or her own emotions. Though our emotions are innate, they are cultivated through education, attachments and experiences. With continued modifications in training in conflict resolution and the understanding of self-reflection, officers will gain a better insight into mediation.


Law enforcement officers play an important role in bringing clarity in chaos. They have the difficult task of being the bridge among bureaucrats, domestic issues, criminal activity and social change. While establishing order, officers must use their understanding of emotional intelligence as a medium to help bring order and clarity. As citizens we must be attuned to the challenges that officers have and continue to hold individuals accountable. As citizens and law enforcement official come to the table with a general understanding of each other duties, together they must seek understanding and resolution, rooting out ignorance through reasoning, patience, investigation and education.


Officers are held to a high standard when it comes to performing their jobs. Rightfully so!  They are considered experts within their fields, though they wear several hats as they often perform heroic tasks. Nevertheless, in the performance of their duties and interaction with citizens, incidents and mistakes will occur. As citizens, we can help officers in the performance of their duties by assessing our own emotional intelligence when incidents occur, seeking reform when needed and allowing transformation to occur, as we serve as agents of equality and justice. On-the-other-hand, if mistakes are made, we must root out the catalyst. We must seek and demand answers and accountability; however, we must be careful not to create a witch hunt environment. We must investigate the validly of what we see and hear on social media before coming to a conclusion. As citizens, we must remember that education helps to root out ignorance. As adults, we should pursue a lifelong learning and teach our kids morals and values, by living by example.



Pedro Bennett, CEO
Venn Leadership and Consulting, LLC

Thinking Outside The Box                                          


Re-posted 11/17/14: Initial Post 7/16/12


Driving a Manual Vehicle:  Leadership Efficiency – Driving A Team


Efficiency is the key to driving a manual vehicle if one wants longevity and to conserve fuel.  Driving a vehicle starts from the time the vehicle is inspected and affirmed that the vehicle is ready to be driven.  Once the decision has been made to drive the vehicle, the drive must decide in which direction the vehicle will be driven.  The inspection of the vehicle will assist in making that determination.


In most vehicles, there is a reason why the vehicle’s accelerator is not depressed or held to the floor.  It could cause flooding, which could stale the vehicle.   Once the ignition has started, and the seat-belt is buckled, if one chooses to wear one, the driver proceeds on his or her journey.  It is important to know which gear to place the vehicle in.  Not knowing so could unnecessarily burn valuable fuel and damage the engine.  The drive must have an understanding of speed, timing, and environmental conditions to effectively change gears.  The condition of the vehicle will also factor into the shifting through the gears.


As the driver drivers on the highway, the driver has a responsible to obey the laws of the roadway, as he or she is constantly being bombarded with stimuli. The reactions to the stimuli should be based upon the laws of the road, the vehicle’s condition, cause and effect and the driver’s ability to execute a particular maneuver.  The sequences in which the driver will react will vary.   At times, components of the sequence will be omitted or altered.  The speed, the ability to recognize and execute the appropriate reaction will help to determine the success and pleasure of the drive.


When parking the vehicle, the driver has a responsibility to understand where to park the vehicle so that weathering, damage and theft of the vehicle are minimized.  After the vehicle is parked, and the ignition and seat-belt are off. The driver then has an opportunity to reflect on the drive.  Reflection allows the driver to determine his or skills, the condition of the vehicle, if another route should be driven and possibly, if the condition of the road should requires maintenance.


The leader’s ability to understand, motivate and drive his organization is based on his or her efficient usage of the people and tools at his or her disposal.  The condition within an organization is constantly changing, as the changes occur that leader must have the ability to identify those changes and make the appropriate maneuver to address the changes.  When assessing the transformation of the organization the leader must view and listen to his or her team(s) and set goals that are applicable to the organizations needs and ability.  Inspection and Maintenance is the per-requisite to efficiency.


Pedro Bennett, CEO

Venn Leadership and Consulting, LLC


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