Common Workplace Communication

Workplace communication skills, and avoiding workplace communication issues, are paramount in today's competitive business world.

Accepting constructive feedback

In the workplace, it's likely that you or your work will be criticized. Criticism focuses on how your work fails to meet expectations or standards. While it's natural to bristle when receiving unfair criticism, learn how to accept critical feedback without becoming angry or defensive. After all, if we were constantly praised for everything we do, how would we improve our work?

Ideally, your supervisor and coworkers will criticize your work constructively and not resort to nagging and negativity. Constructive criticism seeks to measure, analyze, and evaluate your work against an acceptable standard.

In order to be a constructive critic, your supervisor should not simply point out that your work fails to meet standards. Instead, your supervisor should illustrate how your work fails to meet standards. Helpful critics offer feedback, advice, insight, and suggestions that can improve your work.

It's important to recognize and accept that constructive critics are trying to help you improve your work, not attacking you personally.

group of people working around a table

When accepting constructive feedback:

  • Relax before meeting
  • Listen attentively
  • Take notes
  • Answer any questions the critic may have honestly
  • Let the person finish talking before asking questions
  • Offer explanations if necessary
  • Seek ways to improve your work based on the critic's suggestions

At some point, you may be given an opportunity to critique a coworker's work. Be sensitive and careful not to attack this person. Focus on how his or her work could be improved in order to meet acceptable standards.