As a business manager or leader there will be times when you will need to critique work delivered by one of your team members. If you say nothing the problem will only continue.
Any manager who revels in “telling someone off” or embarrassing them in front colleagues is never likely to get very far in business.
To succeed in business you need your team working for you to produce results. Letting your ‘superiority’ ego take over by openly criticizing your staff will only result in you alienating them and ultimately to higher staff turnover that will impede your company or department’s ability to succeed.
So if faced with critiquing sub-standard work your goal should be to point out why the work has fallen short of the required standards, to suggest corrective action, and to do this in a respectful manner so as not to belittle the recipient.
6 Rules for Successful Criticism
1. Never criticize in front of other people.
If you need to criticize someone close your door and make sure the conversation is total privacy.
2. Create a friendly atmosphere
Always preface the criticism with compliment or a kind word. This will soften the blow and make for a much more productive exchange.
3. Never criticize the person, only the act
A successful critique is never personal.
4. Suggest corrective action
To point out what was wrong, one also needs to show them the right way to do things. This will result in fewer problems in the future.
5. Seeking cooperation
Most people will respond better if you ask them to cooperate with you as opposed to demanding it. Only in extreme cases of insubordination should you demand anything.
6. Finish the critique on positive note.
Make sure the conversation ends on a high note with the employee understanding what is required and motivated to perform better. As an example, finish by saying something like “I know you can do this, lets work together on this so we can to knock this one outta the park.”
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