Tactics for Dealing With Criticism

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Samuel Striker Business Criticism

Flickr CC via Christina Saint Marche

Hi, I’m Samuel Striker, a business professional and expert salesman.

At some point during our lives, we will all be criticized for something. On the job, we are even more likely to come up against criticism, and there more than anywhere, it’s important to respond appropriately. Often, our initial reaction to being criticized is to defend ourselves—tell the other person our perspective and reasoning behind why we behaved a certain way. But truth be told, this tactic isn’t always the best. So how can you more effectively deal with criticism?

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Actively Listen

Instead of forming your response or analyzing criticism as the other person is giving it, actively listen to what they are saying. Consider without bias their perspective and try to find seeds of truth within their statements. A little humility can go a long way.

Expand Your Perspective

Allow criticism to expand your thinking, and look at the situation from a different viewpoint. Take criticism as a challenge to think differently, and allow yourself to learn and grow from it.

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Don’t Dwell

The more time you spend dwelling on something someone said, the less time you have to either get back to work or resolve the issue. Take criticism at face value, come up with a solution, and then move on with your life. Dwelling on criticism only serves to compromise you emotionally and damage important work relationships.

Take Time to Collect Your Thoughts

If criticism has made you especially emotional or upset, it’s almost always a bad idea to respond right away. Take some time to cool yourself down, get a grip on your emotions, and logically think through the situation. Responding well is often more important than responding right away. If you are receiving harsh criticism face-to-face, it’s perfectly acceptable to thank the person for their feedback and then excuse yourself. Once you’ve had time to develop some coherent, well-constructed thoughts on the matter, then you can respond if necessary.

Simple Tricks for Faster Email

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Samuel Striker Email

Flickr CC via Christopher S. Penn

Hi, I’m Samuel Striker, a business and sales expert.

On average, office workers spend at least two hours a day on their email. However, while sending emails might feel productive, it does not help you grow professionally. Here are some time-saving hacks to keep email time down.

If you are always sending similar emails – your address, your elevator pitch, you availability – then craft a few templates for responses in Gmail. This will allow you to dish out responses much more quickly.

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Avoid unnecessary emails by sending a text, IM or by just walking over and talking in person. E-mail might not always be the best or most efficient method of communication, so you could save yourself and others valuable time by varying your methods.

Click the “unsubscribe” button as much as possible to get rid of spam emails or unread newsletters. Don’t just shovel them into a folder you never want to open—stop them before they ever have a chance to get to you.

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Stop treating email as an ever-growing to-do list and instead act on them immediately.

Make a daily routine, develop habits (including segmenting out time slots for when you respond to email) and stick to them.

Quit overdoing your inbox filing system. It can get in the way because you still might not recall which folder you put a message in; instead, try using different labels—this will not move messages, but it will allow you to search by label when needed.

Keep your subject lines and email body shorter. People are more responsive to emails that are concise; a wall of text is overwhelming and likely to get lost in the pile.

We’ve all experienced how much of a time-suck dealing with e-mail can be, especially when there is a high volume of incoming email each day. What tips or tricks have you used to cut your email time down?