Is Criticism A Thing of the Past?

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There is only one sure-fire way of avoiding any criticism:

Say Nothing. Do Nothing. Be Nothing. 

But is that any way to live? I have been on the receiving end of a fair share of criticism. I have also given it out. Both sides can be tricky. But one thing remains true: 

The need for criticism has never been greater than it is today. 

We seem to have traded good, honest feedback and constructive criticism for a world of political correctness and politeness. And I get it. 

We don't want to hurt anyone's feelings. No one does. 

But when we seem to live in an age where there are no losers anymore because everyone is a winner? Not good. An age in where not upsetting someone is more important then learning something? Equally bad. And a time where hard earned experience is sidelined by hype or sensationalism? Unsustainable.

Which makes experience all that more valuable. Which makes teaching all that much more important. Which makes losing necessary because in losing there is a valuable lesson. 

After a recent lecture I gave at a trade show, I actively seeked out criticism on my presentation. I asked anyone I could find in leadership what their thoughts were. Then I talked to convention attendees as well. Some had good critiques, some were not so good. But their honest feedback only serves to allow me to learn from my mistakes (which were plenty) and continue to do better next time.

Lets not throw away critique because someone might not like it. Especially if it comes from someone with the knowledge or expertise to deliver it.

 

Nir Bashan is an executive creative director/managing director with over 18 years of advertising, entertainment and business development experience. He writes on topics covering advertising, media, creative solutions and workforce management. http://www.nirbashan.com/blog | nir.bashan1@gmail.com

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