Getting Criticism

Great Leaders get all the data. Sometimes data comes in criticism.  This criticism does not come in neat packages. However, all criticism must be drawn out and analyzed.

All stakeholder groups have opinion leaders that you must stay in close contact with. Some of their thoughts that are most valuable are emotionally charged, and you should seek and draw them out in the right context. When you have heard them, you will be a better leader, because you have a more complete set of data.

Some ideas you get will not be actionable, but you need to know what everyone is thinking and feeling within your span of work. The most important information will usually only come in the home language of the speaker. If you do not have high level Chinese ability, then you need to have trained and trustworthy senior managers who get this job done across language groups like Chinese in this context. I mentioned in the last post the risks there.

Dig for information and be open and mature enough to receive it in any form it comes. Emotionally charged information is often the most critical. You can not act on all information you get, but knowing how opinion leaders are thinking is critical. Surveys can be useful, but one on one dialogue gets you the deepest thought.


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Posted in: Culture Development, External Stakeholders, Leadership

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