Ninety per cent (90%) of us in IT are high detail people, , , that’s a good thing. However, what comes with being high detail is that we like to be accurate and correct, , , and we like to do things “our way”.
One of the downsides to all of this is that we don’t tend to deal with criticism very well, , , it bothers us, , , terribly!
It is very easy for high detail people like you, me, your employees, etc. to be defensive, become argumentative, , , even stubborn when someone tries to point out some of your weaknesses. It could be something to do with a project task, how you implement a software upgrade, even what kind of laptops you buy for users of the company.
Everyone has an opinion and many want to give it to you even if you don’t care to hear it.
Take a moment and consider something, , , really think about this question: How do you cope with criticism?
Do you try to justify your action?
Do you immediately begin to defend your position and what has happened?
Do you argue with clients?
If these things are happening, you might need to ease up a bit. Consider the source of the comment, , , often it’s not intended to be criticizing as much as simply a comment. Generally, people are not intending to make things personal so try not to take it personal.
Look for the insight in the comment that might be of help to you or your team, , , there may be some real value buried in someone’s critique.
Learn to look for the positive that comes with every negative, , , if you look hard enough, I can tell you it is there. I know, I know, , , it is hard to look for positives when someone is criticizing you or “beating up” your team. All I can say is, “Don’t let it get the best of you.”
Listen, be open minded and above all, , , stay positive. Your positive attitude can sway someone else’s negative demeanor to the positive side.
“Listen to the force, Luke.”
Great article Mike, hope people keep this in mind and take criticism in the constructive spirit that it is usually intended. I wonder if there is a corresponding article floating around anywhere directed to the critic e.g. how a critic can learn to make their criticism sound more positive and constructive.
Brian, , , good point. I may follow-up with an article like that. I know I sometimes have difficulty delivering comments that seem to be more serious or “harsh” than I intend them to be.
Thanks for your comment.