Leadership Attitudes: Constructive Criticism

Leadership Attitudes: Constructive Criticism

Understand why constructive criticism is great for your development. Learn to handle negative feedback and give constructive feedback when asked.

If you show your work to someone you know, and ask “What do you think?” they will most probably say it’s okay. They won’t want to offend you. And you won’t learn anything.

Is that what you wanted? Or would you have preferred the truth?

Next time you ask for feedback, don’t ask what is right. Ask what is wrong. Ask what you could have done better. This is what the lazy leader does!

You may not like what you hear, but you are more likely to get constructive criticism, even if the truth may hurt for a while.

Flattery is a sort of bad money, to which your vanity gives currency. – François de La Rochefoucauld

Yet, in time, a slap in the face is better than a pat on the back. A slap in the face—truthful criticism—makes us think. And it helps us to change.

No matter how often we reflect on our performance or how self-aware we believe we are, it is hard to assess ourselves.

Therefore, we must adjust our view of ourselves and seek feedback from others we trust.

Receiving Constructive Criticism

Ask people you know well to give you feedback. For example, ask them what you could have done differently. And when you receive constructive criticism, be open to it. Indeed, the more their feedback differs from your view of yourself, the more potential value it has.

However, in such circumstances, you should always seek feedback from more than one person. When someone gives you constructive feedback, they are offering useful information about themselves and their reaction to what you have done. This is why it is important to hear from more than one person you trust.

What they say may be a surprise. You may decide that you would have done things differently. Likewise, you may be happy doing things just the same. Receiving criticism—constructive feedback—does not mean you have to change.

Criticism should not be querulous and wasting, all knife and root-pulling, but guiding, instructive, inspirational—a south wind not an east wind. – Ralph Waldo Emerson

So remember, a slap in the face is often better that a pat on the back.

How do you handle criticism? Do you find negative feedback helpful? We do! You are welcome to share your aspirations and experiences in the comments.

What's more, please contact us with any changes or improvements you'd like to see at the Lazy Leader.

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