Encouraging Criticism

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Hate Twitter all you want, but, like I’ve said HERE, I find great value in it.  I recently said this after a visit to Lasaters Coffee, a local shop here in Clarksville:

Disappointed that the @lasaterscoffee workers couldn’t serve me a press pot of coffee bc they didn’t know what it was 3:37 PM Dec 2nd

I received this reply from them…directly to me:

@benreed We will be serving coffee via French Press before you know it!! Keep an eye on the website and in the stores:) 10:04 AM Dec 4th from TweetDeck in reply to benreed

Knowing how, and when, to respond to critics is very important.  I applaud Lasaters for their timely and effective response.  Because of that response, they’ll get more business from me.

A critique of the system you’re leading can often feel like a personal attack.

But in the end, critiques can help to improve the overall effectiveness of the ministry.

Maybe a person’s critique is off-base.  Out of line.  Out of touch.  Off-color.  Off-putting.  Off-handed.  Offensive.  Biting.  Reactionary.  Untruthful.  Unholy.  Discouraging.  Poorly timed.  Poorly executed.  Or all of the above combined.

But most critiques have at least a shred of truth.

May we, as leaders in our respective organizations, be humble enough to continually evaluate our system.

How do you encourage open, honest evaluation of your system?


Christ follower, husband, father, writer, small groups pastor at Saddleback Community Church. Communications director for the Small Group Network.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • http://www.thecityresource.com Freddy T. Wyatt


  • Brent Moore

    I think it is great that Ben Reed has such influence over the coffee in Clarksville, that one off handed comment changes the system…I am just glad I know a celebrity.

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/Benlreed Benlreed

      I'll sign your coffee cup next time you come in town.

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  • http://www.michaelbayne.net michael Bayne

    great post Ben!

  • Katrina

    good thoughts….there's some great wisdom there….and it's almost convinced me to start tweeting….almost.

  • http://twitter.com/NateEdmondson @NateEdmondson

    You are absolutely right! Hopefully this summer we will turn criticism into effectiveness in student ministry.