Jason Rosoff, Radical Candor – InnovaBuzz 113

Jason Rosoff, Radical Candor

Jason Rosoff, Radical Candor

In this episode, I’m excited to welcome to the InnovaBuzz Podcast, Jason Rosoff, CEO and Co-founder of Radical Candor.

The name Radical Candor is derived from its meaning: the ability to give feedback in a way that challenges people directly and shows you care about them personally. Its mission is to help leaders and teams build the best relationships of their careers and achieve amazing results.

This is a really insightful discussion about leadership, empowering teams and building the best relationships by creating a culture of great feedback.

Ron Carucci on Episode 106  suggested we interview Jason.

Listen to the podcast to find out more.

Radical Candor is the ability to give feedback in a way that challenges people directly and shows you care about them personally. @jasonrr on #InnovaBuzz podcast Share on X

Show Notes from this episode with Jason Rosoff of Radical Candor

Key points and take-aways from this episode include:

  • Jason’s partner, Kim Scott is the author of a book “Radical Candor: Be a Kickass Boss without Losing your Humanity”.
  • Radical Candor is the ability to Challenge Directly and show you Care Personally at the same time. Its purpose is to improve the state of relationships at work which in turn lowers the amount of psychological damage we’re doing to each other and over time increases the results that people get.
  • Radical Candor is universally human, based on two axes: care personally and challenge directly. You could relate with those axes love and truth. There isn’t a person or a culture in the world who is likely to say that they don’t value love and truth, and so it does touch all of our relationships.
  • When you challenge directly but you fail to care personally, that’s obnoxious aggression. When you fail to care or to challenge, that’s manipulative insincerity – backstabbing behaviour, political behaviour, passive aggressive behaviour, and false apology fits into this category. When you care personally but fail to challenge directly, that’s ruinous empathy. When empathy is not combined with a challenge, you can wind up in a situation where you’re doing more harm than good.
  • What helps feedback to be received in a positive way is your relationship with that person. If you want to give feedback to people, you should probably start in general by soliciting feedback from those people, by offering praise and then by offering criticism.
  • When you need to deliver corrective feedback, the best thing you can do is to maintain two things in your head. One, that you need to be humble when you’re giving feedback. You’re offering YOUR perspective. Just by making it clear that you’re offering your perspective does a lot to close the gap that exists in lots of feedback conversations. FEEDBACK IS A GIFT. The second thing to keep in mind is that your goal needs to be “be helpful” to that person. It’s incredibly powerful to speak your intention to be helpful in the moment. This is a way that you can show that you care about somebody. Instead of it being a right and wrong conversation, keep it in the realm of helpfulness because if they respond negatively or have an emotional response which is normal, you can focus on that intent to be helpful. Make sure that your intention is clear and your behaviour is towards helpfulness.
  • We often think about offering criticism as a way that you challenge directly and offering praise as a way that you care personally. Both praise and criticism should combine caring personally and challenging directly. A praise with no challenge, no follow-up, no expectations of future behaviour is often received very insincerely. The same thing goes with criticism.
  • Practice makes permanent which is why it is so valuable to correct small things early. When people see either the things that need to be corrected or praised, the things that are going well, that kind of information is really valuable at really driving those behaviors that will make someone successful.
Both praise and criticism should combine caring personally and challenging directly. A praise with no challenge is often received very insincerely. The same thing goes with criticism. @jasonrr on #InnovaBuzz podcast Share on X

The Buzz – Our Innovation Round

Here are Jason’s answers to the questions of our Innovation round. Listen to the interview to get the full scoop.

  • #1 thing to be more innovative – Develop a finely tuned way to say NO to lots and lots of things. Innovation starts by creating space for different kinds of thinking.
  • Best thing for new ideas – Having a beginner’s mind. Have the willingness to put aside your judgement. Most of the cool innovative things have not started from some grand new idea but have started from a realization of a small other idea.
  • Favourite tool for innnovation – Observing and participating in conversations. Find a way to be as close as possible into the medium that you actually intend to be working on.
  • Keep project / client on track – Understand the goals of the person you are working with. Focus on the needs of the client
  • Differentiate – Stand in your own reason. Take time to think about a thing for yourself. When trying to come up with a new idea, give it some time to breathe.

To Be a Leader

Your attention is your most valuable resource. If you want to be a leader, if you want set yourself apart, if you want to be an innovator, you can’t do all the work yourself.

Reach Out

You can reach out and thank Jason via email and Twitter.

Suggested Guest

Jason suggested I interview Liz Wiseman, author of “Multipliers”. So Liz, keep an eye on your inbox, for an invitation from us to the InnovaBuzz podcast, courtesy of Jason Rosoff. 



Cool things about Jason:

  • He wanted to be a palentologist when he was young.
  • He worked at MyPublisher and Shutterfly, producing photobooks for customers.
  • He was a product leader at Fog Creek where he helped build the teams that created StackOverflow and Trello.
When you need to deliver corrective feedback, maintain two things in your head: be humble and keep it in the realm of helpfulness. @jasonrr on #InnovaBuzz podcast Share on X

Listen to the Podcast

Jürgen Strauss

Dr. Jürgen Strauss is The World's Best Human-Centred Podcasting Coach and the only Podcast Innovator with the signature bright yellow headphones, who masterfully crafts human connection for high-impact achievers in a vibrant community. You can find Jürgen on LinkedIn, The InnovaBuzz Podcast, The Flywheel Nation Community as well as on Innovabiz' InstagramTwitter, Facebook pages and his personal Photography website.  

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