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Monday, August 29, 2011

How to Handle False Criticism

Constructive criticism is one thing. While someone giving you some negative feedback with the intention of helping you develop and improve your skills is a good thing, it's not always easy to hear. Even when that feedback is true and correct, criticism always stings a bit.

But what if that criticism wasn't true? What if the feedback was false? Some of the most difficult criticisms to bear are those that have no basis of truth. What can you do to respond to negative feedback when it's false?

While our first instinct might be to deny or argue the false claims, getting defensive can lead us into more trouble. Often our denial can feed into the false criticism and help to prove the evaluator's point. Instead of getting angry or defensive, try these steps when encountering false criticism:
  1. Keep your body language calm
  2. Smile
  3. Think before you speak
  4. Thank them for the feedback
Remember, your response in tough situations says a lot about you. Keeping calm and and keeping your temper in check will go a long way. Once you've conquered this initial response, then you can go back and evaluate your own actions and ask clarifying questions.

If you've been on the receiving end of false criticism, take some time to read more about how to handle false criticism at work for some more suggestions and tips.

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