Doug Feilds is a guy who creates awesome resources for youth ministry if you dont know who he is check out at youthministry.com
I was reading one of his blog post today and it inspired this post. You dont have to read his post to understand this post but go ahead take a second, read his post then dart back here and read this post for the full effect.
As I hope, you read his post about criticism and here are a few ways to deal with it.
1. Don't take it personally as a reflection on your ability as a leader. Use the criticism to improve areas that may need improving.
2. Be thankful that they are actually talking to you about the problem and tell them that you greatly appreciate them talking to you about it.
If they have a problem and keep it to themselves and withdraw and you hear second hand that they are ticked off because of something you said or did or someone else said or did, that is hard. So, be thankful they are talking to you about it.
3. Move on from the criticism, dwelling on it and making that criticism your focus can make things hard and get you off task. Don't let it derail your vision.
4. Document the conversation somewhere with the who, what, where and when. You may never revisit the problem but there have been times in my ministry having some kind of documentation about the conversation has really helped prove that I had done everything in my power to deal with the confrontation.
5. Be proactive, don't wait until you run into them on Sunday morning. Call personally leave a message and/or write an email explaining you have called and would love to talk with them and again intentionally communicate that you are glad that they called/emailed about something that is bothering them.
What are some of the ways you deal with criticism?