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My Views on Criticism
In the world of business, arts, anything really, one has to take criticisms about their work as well as be able to give criticisms about other’s work. This is done so that the work can become better and the best it can be. Because you are creating the project/ working on it your perceptive will be a lot more subjected and this can cause certain “flaws” to fly right above you, so you will need an outside, objective, eye. Many artists and writers are told that showing their work for feedback is a great thing to do so that they can make it the best work it can be. However, everyone has an opinion and essentially that what criticism is, so you don’t have to take all the notes if you do not agree with them. But the technical notes should be taken e.g. grammar, spelling, etc.
How to Take Criticism
Since I am more familiar with the arts (e.g. script writing and theatre plays) I will focus more on these types of works but this article can be applied to other fields, I am almost sure of it. Almost. First thing first, make sure that you are being given constructive criticism. This is criticism that is designed to help you improve your current or future works and it is thought out with reasoning. Because a lot of people may say that your work is bad but they do not give a reason as to why. Well, that is not true, the reason why is because they do not like it. This is fine, not everyone will like everything everyone does but even if they do not like it they can still give notes to make it better. They can point out spelling errors, grammar, etc or that the work makes no sense and hence why they don’t like it. This can still be helpful because you are getting an objective view that you can think about as well as see if they are correct or not (i.e if your work makes any sense).
The same can apply for “praise”. If your work is praised without reason (besides the fact that you did something, which is great) it is not really good criticism because you don’t know what to fix. And you’ll get a big head which will lead to big eyebrows which will block your view of your future work and your work will become cr…..pooh. So make sure you are getting constructive criticism.
Second point is your attitude in receiving constructive criticisms. You are asking for it and when you get something you may not totally agree with, don’t be a bitch about it, the critics that you asked are only trying to help and are looking out for you because they love you or pretend to or that is their job or they just wanna or they see the potential in you. Constructive criticism often comes from a good place. But what if you get criticisms from people that you did not ask from e.g. the comment section? Well, going back to the first point, see what is constructive criticism and what is not or trolling. Be grateful that people are bothering to talk to you (sounds harsh but true) and say “thank you”, ignore the trolls (duh) and speak to the “hater” (I don’t like that word) in a reasonable manner. This is what I would suggest because they ("haters") are people on the other side of the screen that could be having a bad day and take it out on everything. Or you can just troll/ play with them, be rude-give them a taste of their own medicine, if you want but try to avoid this unless it is called for. There is no need to fight unless you must.
You can even joke about it.
How to Give Criticism
Now here is a trickier one. You can help people or completely destroy their lives (bit over dramatic but I need to use my degree somehow) with the words that you use. There are many techniques to criticizing but I usually try to use the ‘sandwich’ (that is what I and I’m sure others call it).
This is when you give the good notes that you have noticed, first. A few people think it is not necessary to point out what was done well because if it is good why mention it? The answer that I have to that question is: people should know what they did well so they can keep doing it and it also shows you paid attention to the entire work.
The second part is the meat of the sandwich is, ironically, the negative notes. This should take up the most time because no work is perfect but it can be better. This is what the artist/ creator should work more on and it is the main thing they are looking for when asking for criticism. Then end it off with another set of good notes, different from the first set so that the person does not give up hope and is encouraged, but try not to repeat yourself.
To end off, because I can; look for constructive criticism, listen, think, decide to use it or not and remember that it comes from a good place. Be grateful and ‘logically’ when you are receiving notes. To give criticism: find the style that is best for you (or the team, some people do not like to hear the good notes). Or you can use the one I like; the ‘sandwich’: good, bad, good.
Merry criticizing and creating.