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19 May 2018

The Value of Constructive Criticism

Constructive criticism can be hard to hear, but given right, it can inspire both the critic and the critiqued. People like to be right, correct, and accomplished, and when they’re not, it hurts to hear the truth. Still, those who strive to improve, value direct feedback no matter how painful. Constructive criticism is important for everyone to receive and give because it promotes communication and excellence in organizations and personal growth. By hearing about areas that require improvement, individuals have the ability to change and become a better person or employee.

Constructive criticism is not about pointing out character flaws, but about discussing specific issues and areas that require improvement. The person providing feedback should focus on the issues and offer specific examples that clearly state what needs improvement. Offering suggestions for improvement shows care and concern for the individual and their personal development.

Receiving constructive criticism must also be received correctly in order for it to be truly effective. Hearing about flaws is uncomfortable and often forces people to become defensive, which causes them to stop listening. It is important for the person receiving the criticism to block the instinct to get angry. Instead, a person needs to recall the benefits of feedback and truly listen to what the person giving it has to say in an unbiased way.

Top performing companies are top performing companies because they consistently search for ways to make their best even better. A feedback given process is helpful only when it highlights weaknesses as well as strengths. Feedback is a tool for continuous learning. Invest time in asking and learning about how others experiences’ are while working with your organization. Continued feedback is important across the entire organization in order to remain aligned to goals, create strategies, develop products and services improvements, improve relationships, and much more. Continuous learning is the key to improving.

“Wise people prefer to benefit from constructive criticism rather be ruined by false praise.” – Shiv Khera