Career Testing
Career Testing
Career Testing
WORKPLACE / FEB. 10, 2014
version 2, draft 2

How to Handle Criticism at Work

If you have ever worked in any business, then you have faced some sort of criticism from your superiors. One of the key things that people have to learn when they are maturing in the workplace is how to handle criticism and the different types of criticism awaiting them. Hopefully, this guide will give you a bit of insight on how to deal with this eventuality, no matter how far you are into your career.

Types of Criticism

Criticism can come in different forms, but the main two are constructive and destructive criticism. Constructive criticism is when someone points out something, that you are doing wrong, or a mistake that you made and, then ways that you can rectify it. It may not even really be a problem, but just ways that you can improve your work, to make yourself more efficient. In that way it can be more like advice and is a positive thing that helps you grow. Destructive criticism on the other hand is most definitely not a positive thing. It is when someone just points out your faults and gives you no praise whatsoever. They  may just tell you to ‘shape up or ship out’. This does not help people to grow and there is no way to gain positive feedback from this. But if you do find yourself getting positive criticism then here is the way to deal with it.

  • Listen Carefully

It is extremely important that you listen carefully to what the other person has to say. It will let you decide whether or not this is constructive criticism. Let the person finish what they have to say before you answer back to them. It is not only polite but also sensible. If the person is just telling you how you can serve him better, then it is constructive criticism. If they are just telling you that you are useless; then it is destructive.

  • Consider

If they have asked you a question about whether you think you can complete a task, then consider whether it is feasible or not.  Don’t automatically think that you should blame someone else, remember it is constructive criticism. Thinking about how you are going to answer a question, or what they say to you is important because you will usually have a valid answer, or suggestion. They are talking to you because they want valid feedback, not a violent reaction.

  • Stay Calm and Don’t Get Defensive

This is probably the biggest problem people make. When you hear someone saying that you have made a mistake, don’t immediately think that they are chastising you. It might make you feel a bit under attack, especially if given by multiple people, but don’t just start thinking about ways to defend yourself. Stay calm and poised and whatever you do, don’t shout. It can be hard and make you feel bad, but just take a few breaths and realise they are giving you advice, not telling you off like a small child.

  • Answer In a Productive Way

When you do answer make sure that it is calm, does not blame other people and acknowledges what the person has said. You can make suggestions, or ask questions, if you disagree with points that someone has made. Remember not to disagree too much though, because usually, one the most important things to do is decide how to improve yourself. You can even tell these ideas to your superiors to show that you are being proactive and can handle criticism in a mature way.

Dealing with criticism effectively is not rocket science; it just takes a bit of self-control. But if you follow the steps above, then you should not run into any problems, just as long as you are getting constructive criticism. If it is destructive criticism it is probably better just to listen and shut up. Then have a good moan to a friend or partner after work, to let out your anger. A punch bag might not go a miss in this situation either.

Get our FREE eBook!
'6 Steps to Landing Your Next Job'

LEAVE A COMMENT

0 comments

 

RELATED ARTICLES

How to Handle Interruptions at Work
WORKPLACE / JUL 11, 2014

It’s Monday. After catching up with your co-workers, you finally settle in your workstation, ready to complete that report that was due a week ago. As you get started, a...

Hangover
WORKPLACE / SEP 06, 2015

You might go to work every day with plans of giving your absolute best. You have career goals, which might include advancing the corporate ladder and hitting a certain...

How to Handle a Younger Boss at Work
WORKPLACE / APR 17, 2014

There may come a time in your career when you will work for someone younger than you are – sometimes even obviously younger. Try your best to help your young boss to get...

How to Handle a Long Commute to Work
WORKPLACE / JUN 07, 2013

Individuals who have a long commute to work will need to adopt a number of strategies in order to cope with the pressures of spending long periods of time travelling to...

How Do You Handle Setbacks At Work
WORKPLACE / JAN 13, 2015

As Robert Burns famously said "the best laid plans of mice and men gang aft agley". Whilst failure is an almost inevitable part of life, and especially working life, it...

Tips on How to Handle your First Day at Work
WORKPLACE / JUL 19, 2013

Your first day of employment can be a nerve-wracking experience. There are new people to meet, a new role to adapt to and a range of new responsibilities that you will...

Get our FREE eBook!
'6 Steps to Landing Your Next Job'
G up arrow