Critique sessions translate experience into learning, whether we consider our experience with more gratification or disappointment. They have retrospective value at the end of projects, events, work cycles, months, quarters and years. Not doing them leaves valuable learning currencies on the table. Doing them poorly compromises group trust which is vital to its potential for creativity, courage and connection.
3 things make for a useful critique session.
- Identifying what went well, where progress and success occurred
- Exploring who and what strengths contributed to these
- Deciding what we would love to see possible in future similar contexts
Just these three simple habits extract actionable learning and build trust. Interestingly, these always address everything that could be addressed without creating an atmosphere of blame, division and defensiveness that render any groups slower and dumber together. They have extraordinary value even in the most routine reporting and follow-up meetings and conversations.