What’s the best way to handle criticism of my work?

Q:  What’s the best way to handle criticism of my work?

A:  First, try to see feedback, even if it’s critical, as constructive. Second, try not to argue about it or you may get less feedback in the future.  Third, ask quick questions about how you could have improved the work or how you could build a skill.  Last, thank the reviewer for the help and guidance. 

That said, if you feel the criticism was undue, you could send a short email, something like:  I appreciate your having taken the time to give me feedback about my work.  I know I could have been more to the point had I known all the facts in advance and I look forward to tackling the next assignment from you.  

The same advice applies to a formal performance review.  And, if you feel the ratings or comments were unfair or unwarranted, you can write a short response but avoid being defensive or difficult.  The point is to preserve your working relationships while building your reputation and skills.

Many lawyers get no supervision, feedback, or formal review. I’m glad you do.