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Criticism and Growth


She started with, “I like your aura.” “Thank you. It’s nice to meet you,” came my response. We then began to talk about a video I posted on Facebook to advertise Capoeira classes at Sugar Ridge. I listened when she continued by saying, “The video of you with your kids helping you to promote is cute, but what is Capoeira?"

As a former marketing executive, she viewed the video through lenses with thirty years of experiences in marketing and sales. In her opinion, the video is too short and does not provide a clear description of what to expect during a class. She clarified, “People like to have an idea of what they will experience.” I nodded my head in agreement.

What do you think? I believe the video provides a brief class preview and defines Capoeira in enough time given the attention span of many young and older people today. Leave me your thoughts in the comments below.


Now back to Saturday.

I stood in The Shed at Sugar Ridge not offended by her comments. In many ways, I seek criticism out from the minds of others to play with my creative endeavors. Whether it is writing, editing a video, providing a lecture, training or teaching Capoeira, I understand feedback is an essential tool to learn, improve, grow and sometimes disregard.

Everyone has an opinion. As leaders, we must determine whether to listen or ignore the opinions of others. This does not mean that we will always make the best decision. Among the gains and losses of engaging in meaningful work includes being open to criticism. The lady who commented about my Facebook post wanted to be helpful. From our brief conversation, I knew she invested time and money into supporting the incredible range of classes offered at the Sugar Ridge Resort.

Saturday, was the last day of this session of Capoeira at Sugar Ridge. As I packed up my supplies, I took her advice with me. Attendance was inconsistent during this term of Capoeira classes. Some weeks, fifteen people would show up and participate. On some mornings, I taught my three children. The class has a marketing challenge.

Defining Capoeira is difficult. There are multiple elements within the practice of Capoeira including self-defense tactics, acrobatic movements, dance, music, rituals, and philosophies. Despite my efforts, it is hard to explain each element without some people feeling confused.

In future videos advertising classes, I will make more effort to offer a more precise definition of Capoeira. For brevity, I will describe it as a martial art. The music and other components will be a surprise for the lucky people who participate.

As you go about your work this week, seek criticism. Look for ways to improve and grow into your leadership potential. If you don’t have anyone who can be honest with you and your current place in life, don’t hesitate to reply to this post and inquire about my coaching services.

I am happy to work with you as a guide along pathways toward improvement.


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