Whether we acknowledge it or not, all of us have been facing criticism ever since our birth. Our parents, teachers and elders all would have said something that we adopted as knowledge. In essence, criticism is a way of learning – no body is born perfect. When it comes to facing professional criticism, virtually all of us feel it to be an offense. Freelancers face it more often because they are doing the work as a business. Although it is true that all the critiques or criticism in professional life is not out of sincerity, but still there needs to be critical approach on our part.
To follow are some of the ways we can adopt to handle criticism and not get any strain from it:
Whether it comes from a co-worker, boss or a client; criticism should first be listened to. Listening is the first part of any communication process. If you carefully hear the details you will be able to address the issues in the most perfect way.
Know Your Importance
Whether you are being criticized or encouraged, remember that it is your work that is getting the response. No one is going to kill you for little blemishes and it won’t be difficult to correct a few things for getting the ultimate rewards.
Don’t Take it Personal
Always pay attention to what is being said, instead of who is saying it. There may be some earlier grudges with the manager or the immediate boss but don’t let them come in to your professional thought process.
Don’t be Arrogant
The worst attitude in a professional life is arrogance. Successful professionals always recognize their mistakes and try not to repeat them. The first step of the learning process is to accept mistakes.
Don’t be too Defensive
Sometimes we wrongly go on the back foot, just out of fear. A good professional always asks for employer’s consent before implementing any idea. Therefore you should be confident enough to explain the reasons which motivated you to do such. Tell the employer the importance of taking that particular approach which s/he is criticizing.
Recognize who is Criticizing
It is very important to see who is criticizing. Is that person warranted to give you the opinion? Check if s/he has got some education or experience in that particular discipline.
Analyze the Problem
Good analytical skills are the key to solving most of the problems we face in every day life. Sometimes the problem may not be what it appears to be. Therefore, it is very important to address the real issue underhand.
Devise Corrective Action Plan
After you have identified the problem, you need to take a positive approach to solve the problem. Meanwhile you should also apprise the concerned person of your measures and pay attention to his/her input.
The person who is criticizing you can be doing it for other reasons, for example jealousy, trying to search for some other weaknesses through emotional involvement or might just be habit. While dealing with such a person you need to stay calm and be level headed to focus on the real job.
You Never know the Intentions
It is very likely that the employer is criticizing your work to make you learn. Learning is a never ending process and some people think that they can help you grow professionally only by criticism.Criticism is a part and parcel of professional life and a level headed attitude is required to handle it. After analyzing the problem thoroughly you need to take practical steps to eradicate it and learn from your mistakes.
In the end here is a quote by Winston Churchill that will help us see how important criticism is: “Criticism may not be agreeable, but it is necessary. It fulfils the same function as pain in the human body. It calls attention to an unhealthy state of things.”
Let us know how you handle criticism by dropping a comment here.