It is  that time of year; American Idol audition time. It’s hard to watch the heartbreaking stories of people who put everything, their hopes, their dream on the audition and don’t make it. I find myself in tears for some stranger as they walk back to the embrace of family and friends. Yes, I hear the problems for those who are earnestly trying. I think of how they must have  dreamed of this moment with a positive outcome. Then I wonder what went wrong; did they not get feedback? Why didn’t some one tell them?

We need honest feedback. As American Idol has shown us, it may or may not be your family  and friends.  Many parents are the people who applauded when their children had a semblance of potty training. This unconditional parental love may not be the best for evaluating the talent of their offspring. There is support and there is constructive feedback. The mistake is to confuse the two.

Success takes time, work and determination. Feedback from someone who is qualified and doesn’t love me is more valuable than anything. How else will I find out what works and what does’t? Over the years, I’ve found I sometimes have to give people who are qualified, permission to give feedback. This information makes me better. This coaching gets me closer to my goals. My check point for my goals isn’t just people encouraging me, but the feedback from subject matter experts. It’s the balance of support and constructive feedback that gets me to a goal and I can tell you, my goal is not to become a singer.