Giving criticism is often a challenging act, especially if the person you are giving it to is very sensitive! That’s why you should approach carefully to not to make it worse. But how?
Sometimes when you’re dealing with someone extra-sensitive, Caroline Web, describes in her book How to Have a Good Day that you should avoid the unnecessary things that might trigger his/her defense. Webb suggests the “What I Like” model for these situations:
- Give reasonable details of the way you think. Tell him/her : “What I like about this is . . . “. Then you may need to explain your reasons. Mention any positive points of your recommendation. Try not to rush!
- “The next step is saying “What would make me like it even more is . . .”
By doing so you’re explaining what specifically is true and why. It will help the positive points to be more accentuated and attract their attention to the bright side, and more importantly, they will not raise their shields.
By following up with “What would make me like it even more is . . .” your critique is being considered as an idea to raise their standards and doing better in future.
The result will be that you won’t destroy their self-confidence by directly mentioning your dissatisfaction with something they do.