Feedback: When to Listen to it and When to Ignore It

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Since many of my readers are creatives, I’ve had a number of them ask me how to respond to criticism.  Anyone who’s creative and pushing the boundaries will have critics, so the question becomes, how should we react?  Can I learn from it?  Who should I ignore?  So I asked my friend and writer Simon Dillon, who’s based in the UK, and who’s work includes children’s adventure stories and novels for grown-ups for advice.  Here’s his take:  


The Secrets of Confronting Without Offending


At some point, all leaders will be required to confront someone on their team. It may be about performance, personal behavior, mismanagement, or a host of other possibilities, but confrontation is critical – and inevitable – in all organizations. However, as Deborah Smith Pegues points out in her excellent book “Confronting Without Offending,” the key is to use confrontation to make better employees, not drive them away. Here’s a few of her tips for making that happen:


Seth Godin’s Advice on Nit-Pickers: Pastors and Leaders Need to Read This


My friend Seth Godin wasn’t writing this for pastors, but when I read it, I realized pastors were exactly the right audience for this piece. Read it through and let me know if you agree. And perhaps more important – if you’ve ever experienced one or more of these types of folks in your church or ministry:


How To Turn The Tables On Your Critics


If you’re a leader in politics, ministry, business, or in the media here’s something important you need to know: In today’s digital culture, you can’t hide anymore. In the old days, politicians could hide a mistress, TV evangelists could hide their jets or mansions, and anyone could hide a DUI conviction, an old arrest, and more. But today, the river of information that flows into Google is just too vast. That’s why I strongly recommend that if you’re in the public eye, you need to


Great Art Doesn’t Tell – It Shows

The following are the remarks by Wall Street Journal drama critic and columnist Terry Teachout when he received the Bradley Prize in Washington, D.C..  When I read them, I immediately thought of writers, filmmakers, musicians, and artists who are driven by their faith.  All of us need to be reminded of what Terry says is the key to creating great art: 


When (If Ever) Is It OK To Criticize Other Christians?


I’m not sure if this puts my salvation in doubt, but here’s a link that’s absolutely must see.  It’s a compilation someone posted on the “5 Worst Christian Videos on the Internet.”  Now these are truly award worthy. I’ve seen some terrible things – and you could probably add a few more – but these are really bad. So while we hate to criticize other believers, the question becomes –


Are Negative Comments Online Damaging Creativity?


Blogs have comment sections. Facebook has comments. People can respond to anything you say on Twitter. Social media is not just about being “social,” it’s about getting a response. The problem is, many of us debut creative ideas online. We try out the subject of a new book, or present a concept for an ad campaign or movie idea. In similar cases, leaders toss out new ideas to see what people think. But sometimes,


Let’s Stop Blaming God for Our Failures


Maybe it’s because I’ve spent so much of my career working in advertising and marketing, but after a Christian event where nobody shows up, when I hear the phrase, “Well, the people that needed to be here were here,” it sure seems to me like an excuse. We hear it all the time when only a handful of people show up to an event: “Well, only 6 people came, but I believe those were the people God wanted here.” Really? I don’t want to sound harsh and ungodly here, but