Saturday, March 15, 2014

Quote-A-Day: Day 74

Anyone can give . Only the best and can take and do something with it.

Criticism is a part of everyday life, and this is unlikely to change.  From a young age, we are used to being critiqued, whether based on achievement, behavior, or opinion.  As we age, we begin to separate out the helpful critiques from the less helpful ones, understanding that some who share information share it to help while others share it to make themselves feel better.

One interesting aspect of criticism is that everyone feels expert enough to give it.  As leaders and learners, we have to understand that giving criticism requires no degree.  Regardless of who we are or where we are in life, one thing we can always share is a critical idea.

And yet, criticism can be one of the most powerful ingredients to a growing learner or leader, despite the fact that it is always in high supply, regardless of demand.  I'm lucky to work for a supervisor who actively seeks out criticism from all members of our team.  Regardless of one's position, she asks for feedback, and readily seeks out constructive criticism.  Having the opportunity to work with her has helped me become better at regularly seeking to be critiqued; this in turn has made me a more effective educator.


Simply because I realize that everyone's ideas have the potential to be game changers, and despite how great I believe an action I've taken is, I'm always cognizant of the fact that many could have done it better.  The other great aspect of regularly seeking criticism and putting it to use is that it builds capacity and community.  When a leader (or a learner for that matter) asks for others to find fault in actions taken, it shows a desire to remove the person and focus on the organization.  This community push often encourages others to put themselves out there as well.

This week I'll be sharing a problem of practice with our curriculum team.  I'm looking forward to receiving warm and cool feedback, and putting the ideas shared into use.  After all, how can we hope to change if we don't let others help us see that things need changing?

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