From a semantic point of view, feedback is a composite term. The prefix retro indicates backwards in time and food is used in the sense of supplying or informing and not in relation to nutrition.
A trend in communication
Feedback is a phenomenon of communication. It could be defined as that information back in an effective communication. In every communication process there are two main elements: a sender and a receiver. A feedback occurs between the two when the receiver responds to the sender.
The concept that we analyze here is used in very diverse contexts: in the business world, the social sciences, communication itself or psychology. Anglicism feedback is used as a synonym in everyday language.
Internal and external feedback scenarios
We can speak of a fedback or internal feedback, which is one that occurs in ourselves through the feelings we have about something. Suppose that we get nervous in certain situations (in this case we have had an emotion that affects us and from which we can draw conclusions). There is also external feedback, which comes to us from the context that surrounds us. Likewise, it is possible to distinguish between negative and positive feedback.
The first does not provide us with any relevant information (for example, if someone tells us that something we have done is wrong but does not say anything else about it). On the positive side, the receiver provides valuable information to the sender (for example, so that he can improve in some aspect). Obviously, positive feedback is more valuable, since it is possible to draw conclusions from it and change a strategy or a habit.
Feedback is useful to enrich communication, be it from a person, an entity or a system where there is an interaction. At the same time, it serves as a reinforcement when presented in a constructive way.
Feedback on business dynamics
The idea of feedback in the context of a company implies a desire for change, that is, there is a purpose to improve a behavior, a service or an organizational pattern. Feedback should not be confused with criticism, since in general terms criticism (especially if it is destructive) does not have a strategic function
Feedback is intended to be a useful instrument in the operation of a company. For this, it is important that it be a permanent process and not something sporadic (having two meetings a year to analyze some results is insufficient and not very operational). A feedback system must be implemented, that is, a rigorous methodology that allows information to be analyzed (knowing the customer's opinion is essential to maintain quality and to make quick decisions). Feedback should not be confused with permanent debate, since it is about evaluating objective processes and that opinions have an empirical basis.