Scaling Feedback for New L1s

Remember how it felt when you first heard “Welcome to Level 1?” I often ask judges why they joined the program, and as a result, I’ve heard a number of humorous and inspiring stories. No matter how different each judge’s reasons and motivations have been, stories about achieving Level 1 typically share a similar response to the achievement -- a combination of personal pride and self-conscious uncertainty at what comes next. This is why it is so important that we provide meaningful

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Feedbag #7: Leading a Horse to Water

Hello and welcome to the latest edition of the Feedbag! Last time, we covered the subject of review drafts. This month, our question is about how to help enable feedback when you’re in a leadership role: I’m team leading at an upcoming event, and I’d like to encourage my team to review each other. Do you recommend any strategies or approaches that have worked well in facilitating review exchanges and/or making sure that the reviews are actually written after the event? This question is actually

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Taking Selfies – Part Three

Over the last couple of months we’ve explored the general value of introspection and self reviews. This value is one of the reasons that the Level 3 Advancement Process requires a comprehensive Self Review (in caps to distinguish it from normal self reviews). It’s important for L3s to be able to examine themselves honestly and critically. This month I’ll go over four of the Qualities of a Premier Judge (L3), as well as offer quick tips for using these qualities to evaluate yourself with

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Feedbacklash

A lot of great stuff has been written about the feedback process, especially how to deliver it: Talk to the person first. Send a draft of the review in e-mail form. Balance the positive and negative feedback. Here’s the problem: these points are all centered on sparing the feelings of the person receiving the feedback. We spend no time discussing the feelings of the person giving the feedback. Have you ever given feedback to someone only to have them react defensively? Maybe you felt like

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Scaling Feedback

You know how excited parents celebrate their children’s first tottering attempts at walking? How they ooh and ah and cheer and gasp and take dozens of pictures to post on social media? When I visited my parents recently, they did not cheer even though I walked quite well. Obviously my parents love me, but they no longer celebrate when I walk across a room without falling. Why not? They now expect me to walk proficiently. While I may have been clumsy as a teenager, with a pair of designated

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Feedbag #6: Feeling a Bit Drafty

Hello and welcome to the sixth edition of the Feedbag! Last time, we covered the best approach for writing a tournament report about a tournament that had some tournament organizer trouble. This month, our topic will be drafts! No, not the kind that incinerate all your tickets on Magic Online! The kind that you write to share with your subject before submitting a review in Judge Center. I’ve seen this topic come up over the summer in discussions here and here, as well as in conversations

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Say Anything.

You know, writing and judging really have a lot in common. That probably has something to do with why I enjoy both of them so much. One of those things, one that it took me an incredibly long time to get over, is that it’s hard to know how you’re doing unless someone else tells you. This isn’t a solo quest. When you write something, you know what you meant to say. You know how you intended it to come across. You can clearly see the brilliance of your vision. And that’s the problem.

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Feedbag #5: TO Trouble

Hello and welcome to the fifth installment of the Feedbag! Last time, we covered how to have a conversation with someone who has provided feedback you disagree with. Our question for this month comes to us from “PO’d by TO”:   I'd like to write a tournament report, but my experience with the TO was largely negative. The event was poorly planned and managed. What should I do? To begin with, I’ll focus on the tournament report aspect. If the tournament organizer creates negative

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Taking Selfies – Part One

Self reviews are somehow simultaneously the easiest and hardest type of review. What makes them so, and how can you average those two sides out to find a happy medium? It’s common for newer judges to not even realize that writing a self review is a thing that they can do. With your first exposure to reviews likely being your L1 Advancement Review, it’s easy to get locked into the mindset that reviews are a peer-to-peer tool. But there’s a subtle hint in the review submission form; every

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My First Review – George Gavrilita

Welcome back to another edition of My First Review. Looking back on the first two reviews we’ve featured, I noticed that both were longer than a typical first review. While their length is by no means a bad thing, I don’t want to give judges the wrong idea of what to expect out of their first review. Reviews don’t have to be long. In fact, last week on The Feedback Loop, wrote an article advocating that less is often more. This brief first review comes to us courtesy of of Torino,

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