RSS Feed (xml)

Powered By

Skin Design:
Free Blogger Skins

Powered by Blogger

Thursday, January 15, 2009

How to Accept Criticism While at Work

So you just finished what you thought was a great project at work, and now your boss is listing all the things you need to improve upon. Don't get discouraged; constructive criticism is a key part of any job. Through this article, learn how to accept criticism and do your job as well as possible.


1. Accept that you are not perfect. If you begin each task thinking that nothing will go wrong, you're fooling yourself. You will make mistakes, the important thing is to learn from them.

2. Double check your work. After you've finished, and before you submit it to your supervisor, be sure you've gone over everything carefully. This can help you to avoid silly mistakes and ensure that your boss won't have to bother you about minor problems.

3. Don't take it personally. If your co-worker has criticism for you, remind yourself that it doesn't necessarily mean s/he doesn't like you, or that you're not good enough for the job. Your co-worker is simply trying to ensure that you do the best work possible.

4. Listen carefully. If you ignore critical comments, you're doomed to repeat the same mistakes. Take notes and continually remind yourself how to fix the problem. This step is the most difficult, as it can mean that one must "suck up" one's pride and admit one's responsibility in one's work-related errors.

5. Don't hold a grudge. Staying angry/upset about criticism can affect your future work. Put the mistakes out of your mind and focus on doing the best job possible on the next task.

6. Clear the air. If you're upset with how your co-worker criticized you, let him or her know as soon as possible, so there are no lingering bad feelings between the two of you. Explain why it upset you, and suggest changes that could be made to strengthen your relationship.

7. Accept the fact that others may see something that you don't. Even if you don't agree with the criticism, others may be seeing something that you are not even aware of. If they say that you are negative or overbearing, and you don't feel that you are, well; maybe you are and you just don't see it. Allow for the fact that others may be right, and use that possibility to look within yourself.

Positive Ways to Accept Criticism

Do you hate being criticized even when you know you've made a mistake? If so, it's no wonder -- criticism can make people feel incompetent, angry and just plain awful.

How do you, personally, respond to criticism? Do you make excuses or lash back with criticism?
"This fight-or-flight response is natural and common, but it isn't very productive. It cuts off communication, often just when it's needed most," says Jean Lebedun, Ph.D., author of the video program "The Art of Criticism -- Giving and Taking."

Many supervisors don't give criticism in a tactful manner. Nevertheless, you should accept criticism so you can learn from your mistakes. But don't fret; it'll be easier when you use Dr.
Lebedun's "4-A Formula -- Anticipate, Ask questions, Agree with something and Analyze."

Accept the fact that everyone makes mistakes and that you'll probably be criticized for yours.

That way, criticism won't come as a surprise.

Here's another way to anticipate: Take the wind out of the sails of criticism by admitting your mistake first, before your supervisor has an opportunity to say anything to you. This makes your supervisor's job easier and makes you appear more professional.


'What can I learn from this criticism?' Then, whenever you feel yourself growing defensive or getting angry, you repeat the question 'What can I learn?'

Agree with something

When faced with criticism, most people focus on the part of the negative feedback that may not be true and ignore the rest. This doesn't solve any problems, and you don't learn anything.

When you agree with one part of the criticism, you become open to learning. An easy way to agree is to say something like this: "You might be right; my Pro Act skills were not how they should be."

"You don't have to agree with everything; even agreeing with one small aspect of the criticism will create an atmosphere of teamwork, The focus then can become how you'll work together to solve a problem, which will lessen your feeling of being attacked."


Finally, take a break and evaluate what you've heard.