In any leadership position the leader will receive criticism at some point. It is virtually impossible to do everything in a way that pleases everyone. Even Jesus had critics. It comes with the territory of leadership.
As a leader, I have learned that there are times with the criticism is dead-on and something I need to hear and other times when I need to dismiss it and continue in the direction I feel God has led me to go. Knowing when to accommodate the critic and when to ignore the criticism is a careful balance leaders face often. If I give into every critic I will never complete the mission God has called me to do. If I never listen to critics I will become arrogant and prideful.
Here are some principles I try to remember so I can balance the two extremes:
Learn something from everything – There is usually something that can be learned even from the harshest criticism, if nothing more than better understanding people.
My ultimate calling is to honor and obey Christ – I try to make sure I am pleasing Him above everyone else.
Find my affirmation in the people to whom God has called me to minister – This is a new principle for me, but one I wrote about HERE.
Consider the person offering criticism – A person with a sincere heart for the Kingdom, my ministry and me personally carries a lot more weight with me.
Be willing to humble myself – The fact is I could be wrong and others could be right. If criticism is warranted I must be willing to alter my position.
Leaders, how do you handle criticism?