Feedback Style: Vague Vocalist

Feedback Style: Vague Vocalist

Feedback Style - Vague Vocalist

Attributes of a Vague Vocalist

Coach – Creative – Experienced – Leader – Sensitive – Distracted

Who is a Vague Vocalist?

Ah, the review style of those who fancy themselves a coach. This feedback type loves to leave ambiguous comments in the margin that give the creator room to make the changes to their taste. The Vague Vocalist is vocal about wanting change but not specific enough for you to know what they are looking for.

The Vague Vocalist is a close cousin to the Kind Collaborator but without the teeth to give firm direction. This feedback style allows people to produce better products through their own power without being told what to do. This style ultimately wants you to do your work.

The vague reviewer is often creative and sensitive to harsh feedback. They want to create an environment of kind collaboration but usually leave you confused. The ambiguity is like a foggy harbor when the ship is trying to get to the dock. It’s hard to get there, and there are bumps along the way.

What To Do If You Are A Vague Vocalist

Being a creative coach is admirable. It’s good that you want to allow people to grow in their creative voices. But being ambiguous is not helping the creator.

  • Focus on what you like about the idea. It’s easy for Vague Vocalists to jump to problem-solving and to coach quickly. However, encouragement is as important as correction. So try to point out what you like about the idea before diving in.
  • Add more clarity to your feedback. Your feedback process might need more concrete direction.
  • Clarity is essential to efficient work. If your team feels that they constantly have to come back to you with questions, you are slowing down the process. You also risk people ignoring your feedback because it’s not concrete enough.
  • Make sure you set your team up for success by being direct about what needs to change and where they can use their skills to make the piece unforgettable.

Burnout can be real for your creators if you don’t pay attention to your vague tendencies. It’s hard to wander around trying to understand what changes you want in a document. Be clear on what you are adding to the idea.

How to STOP Being a Vague Vocalist

  • Know that creators cannot read your mind.
  • Start with what you like about the idea.
  • Give your feedback vocally instead of over email or through track changes.
  • Be concrete about what you want to change: “I like it this way.”

Unlock Your Team’s Creative Potential with the Kind Review Method!

Acceptance of your Feedback Style is the first step to creating a kind workplace. Great job!

Now the real work begins. Order your copy of Kindly Review to learn how to unleash the creative power of your team. Learn all the Feedback Styles, and get a step-by-step process to complete your creative work in just 2 rounds of feedback. For real. It’s powerful stuff.

Being Kind Boss is the key to increased productivity and greater employee satisfaction. Kindly Review will get you the skills to lead with kindness.

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Kate Runy


A passionate technical wizard, Kate thrives on managing online content, social media for communications, and development projects.  Kate is the workhorse of the team, pulling out amazing feats of content creation and management week in and week out. 

Prior to joining BC/DC Ideas, Kate coordinated website and social media content, communications, and advertising for Go Global NC and Alzheimer’s NC.

Things that make her happy: I love animals about as much as I love working for nonprofits.

Mishel Gomez Cespedes


Mishel brings a passion for video storytelling and quippy social media content to the team.  At BC/DC Ideas, she is most likely editing video or scheduling the next moving social media post for our clients.

Her ear for storytelling is her greatest asset. Mishel has a unique ability to assemble content into a concise story that moves audiences to action.

A graduate of Wake Forest University she spent a semester in Spain and years serving her community through the campus organizations. Now, she is putting her passion for good to work.

Brian Crawford

creative director

Mix equal parts nerd and creativity and that’s Brian. A natural problem-solver, Brian’s ability to cut to the core of any problem helps guide our creative team to the correct solution without wasted time or money. It’s the core, this little nugget of truth, that helps our clients take the next step with their audiences.

Brian gets the greatest joy out of helping our clients realize and connect with their story. He is a true believer that everyone and every organization has a compelling story to tell, you just have to listen with an open heart.

Things that make him happy: Hanging out at the park with family, toddler-speak, hitting the focus pull, and good coffee.

Dawn Crawford


The engine behind BC/DC Ideas, Dawn has dedicated her career to good. Dawn brings her considerable experience and expertise to helping elevate the nonprofit sector. Our team’s lead strategist, Dawn is often seen leading our IdeaStorms, penning communications plans, or checking in with clients.

Before launching BC/DC Ideas in 2010, she earned her chops in 10+ years of communications leadership roles for public health, healthcare and youth-focused nonprofits. Working for nonprofits is Dawn’s dream job, and she loves that her 40+ hours a week make the world a better place.

Things that make her happy: A glass of champagne to celebrate big wins, Basecamp, living in the South, seeing the world, and a well-formatted spreadsheet.