Giving and Receiving Constructive Criticism

(Part 2 – Recent Workshop at SWM ASL Institute)

“It is more blessed to give than to receive.” – Acts 20:35

Most people seem more comfortable giving feedback to others than receiving it. However, properly giving feedback can be very difficult. Here are some helpful suggestions….

How to GIVE Constructive Criticism

1. Only give feedback when it is appreciated and accepted.

2. Honor the other’s experience and seniority. Use respect when “helping” a more experienced person. Use caution when critiquing someone who is very inexperienced. Wrong or poorly-timed words can hurt rather than help.

3. Allow others time to relax before you offer any comments. Commenting immediately is usually bad timing.

4. Arrange the method and time of feedback in advance, when possible. Avoiding surprises helps avoid misunderstanding.

5. Preface your remarks with a polite comment such as, “Are you open to suggestions at this time?”

6. Limit the number and duration of your comments. Offer more compliments than critiques. Most people can only work on one or two areas needing improvement at a time.

7. Share only your most significant comments. Never be trivial or nit-picky. Never use your comments to make you feel better, but always genuinely seek to help others.

8. Allow others to stop your comments at any time. Always only share appropriate amounts of critique.

9. Always use common sense. Listen to your heart when it tells you to wait or hold feedback. You will be glad you did!

More next issue: Practical suggestions
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