Tell Me What I Don't Want to Hear Using Constructive Criticism to Grow Your Small Business

Using Constructive Criticism to Grow Your Small Business
February
14th, 2014
Keyhole - Content Marketing - Joe Dudeck
Joe Dudeck
President + Founder
Categories: Marketing Strategy
February
14th, 2014
Keyhole - Content Marketing - Joe Dudeck
Joe Dudeck
President + Founder
Categories: Marketing Strategy
Tell Me What I Don't Want to Hear

I discovered this show CNBC recently called “The Profit,” in which Camping World CEO Marcus Lemonis walks into a struggling business and, in exchange for equity, offers an investment and go-forward strategy.

On a recent episode, he talked about the problem of “pride of authorship” that he often sees in business founders. Of course, it can happen to anyone. It’s that sense of personal satisfaction in something created and that sense of personal attack we feel when someone critiques it.

The episode got me thinking about our constant struggle to hear constructive criticism…or at least take it. Most of the time we really just want others to tell us what we want to hear. We want our actions, our campaigns, our strategies to be affirmed as great-as-is by others. We want feedback like, “I wouldn’t change a thing. You’re killing it! You did a phenomenal job!”

But as Seth Godin says in his blog “The Feedback You’ve Been Waiting to Hear,” that’s not feedback. It’s applause.

If we really want to change and improve though, we should really be asking for others to tell us what we DON’T always want to hear. Tell us what we’re not doing…or not doing well. Point out our blind spots. Explain why our thinking’s clouded.

This doesn’t mean we blindly accept everything people tell us, but we at least remove the hands from our ears. And then we can hear the things that can enhance the products and services we provide and improve the ways we serve our customers.

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