Whether you’re at the top of an organization or are a rank and file employee, working in a company or organization means that at some point someone is going to critise you - right or wrong. Sometimes the criticism is about your work and sometimes about your behavior. And when you work overseas with people of different nationalities, a chance remark by someone from a different country can seem like criticism when it is not criticism at all.
We do our best in the work that we do, but really, nobody’s perfect. This is why we need people to help and guide us in the workplace. Taking in criticism can be a challenge since we already put so much effort into our work. It is, however, essential for one’s growth. So take a deep breath and be open to the critique given to your work. Criticism keeps us on our toes and is a daily reminder that there is always room for improvement and growth. Don’t take it too personally, chill lang! Try to take the criticism constructively and to improve based on what is said, and when you succeed, thank the critic.
Here are some ways on how to handle constructive criticism in the workplace.
Wag mo i-personal
First of all, don’t assume that a critic is out to get you. Good vibes lang, huwag mag pa-victim. Perhaps the critic, or your boss, has more experience and wants to share this with you so that you improve. Take the criticism objectively as advice and see how it can improve your work.
It starts with having the right attitude. Be open and humble enough to take in the points for improvement given to you. Don’t practice resistance and negativity because it closes the window to learning. Something you should never do is to create excuses that justify your mistakes. It’s okay to make mistakes, but we should not settle for them.
Take down notes
Make this a learning experience. Wag mo ilabas sa isang tenga. If you can, jot down notes during the review session, or whatever it is, so you can use the pointers for next time. Learning is good, but remembering and applying what you have learned is the key to getting better.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions
After taking time to listen, don’t be afraid to ask questions for better understanding. It is only in understanding the criticism that you will grow. Don’t be afraid to follow-up or clarify the points given to you. It’s also better if you ask for specifics if the statement is too general. This way, you will understand the corrections better.
Don’t be so hard on yourself
Everybody has to start somewhere. Don’t be so hard on yourself, especially if you’re new to the job. Learning is part of the process. This can create a negative outlook that may affect your self-esteem as well as your future output. Take in the criticism and submit work that’s better than ever!
Know when to defend yourself
A colleague personally attacking you is different from a mentor wanting you to grow. There is also a difference between helping a person and practicing crab mentality. If this is the case, be sure to disconnect yourself from the situation pronto. Also know when it’s time to speak up and defend yourself if you believe the criticism is unjust but don’t start an argument. Just prove the person wrong with your good work.
These are some tools that can help you handle criticism constructively in the workplace. We hope that this will inspire you to improve and go even further in your job abroad. You’ve got this. No employee or workplace is perfect, so there is always room for improvement. It all begins with having the right attitude.
Kaya mo yan! Let’s do this! It’s time to go for greatness.
©2019 Ikon Solutions Asia, Inc.
All rights reserved. No part of this article shall be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without written permission from Ikon. No patent liability is assumed with respect to the use of the information contained herein. Although every precaution has been taken in the preparation of this article, the publisher and author assume no responsibility for errors or omissions. Neither is any liability assumed for damages resulting from the use of information contained herein.
Ikon specifically disclaims any responsibility for any liability, loss or risk, personal or otherwise, which is incurred as a consequence, directly or indirectly, of the use and application of any of the contents of this article.