Constructive Criticism is a Necessary Evil

For me, constructive criticism can be a bitter pill to swallow. I fully understand that it’s meant to help make you better. Though I suppose I don’t like to admit that I need direction from time to time. During my time working as a freelance writer, I’ve been fortunate to find steady work so quickly. This also means that I haven’t had to face any real rejection or critiquing of my work. That being said I got my first taste of constructive criticism today and it took me a bit to come to terms with. I did however take the time to fully digest what they had said and despite my ego being in a tiff, I agree with their feedback. To give you a better understanding here’s my take on how I logically perceived the feedback and how my ego took it.

Logic:

Their points make total sense. It was more of a puff piece than actual research. I’ll dig a little deeper and present an article that is based on the research. Also I appreciate the fact they’re giving me the opportunity to redo the article rather than go with someone else.

Ego:

Well that’s stupid, the article wasn’t that bad. Sure I didn’t put in the legwork, but I’m awesome and I don’t have to. I don’t need to change my ways and I’m just gonna watch Duck Dynasty instead.

 

My mind works in weird ways lol. Fortunately for me, I’m going to side with logic on this one and redo the article. I tend to run through things rather quickly instead of making sure I’ve done my due diligence. . Because of my lack of experience/coping with constructive criticism it got me thinking about my generation in its entirety. I don’t like to speculate on people in masses, though I do wonder, are millenials equipped to handle rejection/criticism? I’ve been racking my brain and I can’t remember too many instances in which I’ve been a recipient of either. Also, I know in the past I haven’t always dealt well with criticism, no matter how constructive.This was a good lesson on the art of humility for me.

I’m also learning to keep my ego in check and fully understand why constructive criticism is so important. Sure it doesn’t always feel good, but in reality I gained more knowledge and understanding of the expectations of my assignment. Now I’m off to go do some research. ūüôā

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If You Can’t Beat ’em, Join ’em

 

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Working with people who kiss ass to climb the “corporate ladder” really grinds my gears. I had a coworker whose nose was so far up my supervisor’s derri√®re that it probably needed to be surgically removed at that point. Don’t get me wrong, I understand that a little schmoozing is necessary to gain favor with the higher ups but this dude took it to the next level.

For instance 2 people and myself had seniority on the team and we all had different styles that worked well with the company. Me being the young “altruistic” one (definition: young, arrogant, and ignorant) made a name for myself because I wasn’t trying to¬†adhere to the “man”. I had “integrity” meaning I could look myself in the mirror at night knowing that my nose was poop free. Also, I was damn good at my job. (Again that young and arrogant thing comes into play).

One of my other¬†colleagues and I would text play by play insults (picture Charles Barkley, Kenny Smith, and Shaq giving commentary on the NBA finals.) during conference calls directed towards this individual. Now, I’m not knocking him as a human being. I’m sure he’s lovely. With that being said his “at any cost” attitude made him seem untrustworthy and self-serving. So finally at one point, I got so sick and tired of his “look at how awesome I’m being, Boss” ways and decided to give him a dose of his own medicine. (I’m sure this sounds vindictive but hey, I was/am young, I’m sure I’ll learn the error of my ways at some point).

Instead of getting annoyed at his blatant attempts to look better than the rest of us, I started playing his game. I would over communicate and give the team helpful pointers. The major difference between him and I is that my ability of perceiving others surpassed his. Instead of coming off as a self-absorbed douche, I looked like a mentor.¬†¬†In time, my boss started praising me and my ability to help the new members of the team learn and grow. I couldn’t care less about the praise, but my satisfaction was the blatant envy I could hear in his voice when our boss shot down his idea in favor of mine and all he could do was agree that it was a solid plan. To add insult to injury other members of the team would call me laughing about how obvious it was that he was pouting. It made my conference calls a lot brighter and more satisfying.

Now was what I did right? Debatable. Did it seem like a dick move? Absolutely. But in retrospect, the information I gave to my coworkers was coming from a good place and I really did want everyone to succeed. So I figured why not have a little fun at the resident brown noser’s expense? Plus it made my job that much more fun. In the end, if you can’t be ’em, join ’em.