South Australian Business News

Why the ‘right’ punch in the face is the best feedback in the business

Jake Spain
Wednesday, November 8th 2023

Constructive criticism is a term often used to mask negative feedback in the workplace, but the power of the right’ constructive criticism can act as the catalyst for real professional and personal growth.

Luke Timmins, Co-Owner of Adelaide Hills Lawns & Gardens, recently sat down with Tim Lavis on the ThirtyNiners podcast to discuss how a punch’ in the face he received from his business partner (Jarrad), changed his leadership style forever.

I was completely oblivious to a lot of things I was doing in my life, but I still remember the day Jarrad gave me some feedback, he’s basically got a knack for punching you in the face without hurting you. He can give you some really, really strong feedback, but he does it in such a charismatic way that you can’t hit the guy back.

Once I got over the fact he punched me in the face and then I implemented it, I was like, this is odd, this has changed my dynamic of how I was doing that one thing. Can I have a bit more of that? Like, give me some more feedback?”

Authentic self-reflection and self-improvement can be a superpower in the business world, and something as simple as an honest punch’ in the face from a trusted source can create a reciprocal environment, which is exactly how Luke and Jarrad lead their business today.

Jarrad said after he punched’ me, can you give me some feedback? I was still young at the time, but I went bang, and I hit him with a bit, and he said wow I have never thought of that before — then all of a sudden, we created this feedback culture where we could give each other punches in the face.

The feedback mechanism is so important to grow a business, it’s great to receive it, but the most important thing is you have to have the awareness to actually change as well. It takes great humility to realise the extent of one’s ignorance, and I think that’s a really powerful tool that’s not necessarily taught in schools”.

This hunger for challenging oneself in order to grow was the spark for Luke to become one of the founding members and now one of the biggest advocates of the ThirtyNiners group.

What you can learn from just having general chats with people who are going through such similar situations is huge. There are so many powerful people in that group, and I just love listening to them.

But again, they’ve just got so much humility and empathy, and they’re willing to give you the time of day, no matter who you are, to share their business learnings whilst empowering you to share yours”.

To hear the remainder of this incredibly insightful conversation with Luke Timmins, search for the ThirtyNiners Podcast by the South Australian Business Chamber wherever you hear your podcasts.


Jake Spain

Marketing and Communications Executive
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