How To Criticize — And Not Be Hated For It

Is it possible? Perhaps!

“Charles Schwab was passing though one of his steel mills one day at noon when he came across some of his employees smoking. Immediately above their heads was a sign that said “No Smoking.” Did Schwab point to the sign and say, “Can’t you read?” Oh, no not Schwab. He walked over to the men, handed each one a cigar, and said, “I’ll appreciate it, boys, if you will smoke these on the outside.” They knew that he knew that they had broken a rule—and they admired him because he said nothing about it and gave them a little present and made them feel important. Couldn’t keep from loving a man like that, could you?”

Excerpt From: Dale Carnegie. “How to Win Friends & Influence People.”

Pretty smart, right? How often do we find ourselves in shouting matches with people at our local convenience stories? Working up a sweat and raising your blood pressure only to see that “enemy” smiling while waving ‘goodbye.’  They win, you lose.

As human beings, we’re quick to criticize.  I was recently killing my brain cells while watching useless MMA YouTube videos. While I was watching some of these videos, I would see the MMA fighters not only lacking confidence, but blaming reporters for the “stirring” up of everything.  I like the Marshawn Lynch and Richard Sherman approach of everything.

The lady tries to criticize him and he asks her follow-up questions to question her credibility.  This is an excellent way with dealing with critics in general.

Marshawn just completely ignores them by saying, “yes.” I find it amusing.

“Many people begin their criticism with sincere praise followed by the word “but” and ending with a critical statement. For example, in trying to change a child’s careless attitude toward studies, we might say, “We’re really proud of you, Johnnie, for raising your grades this term. But if you had worked harder on your algebra, the results would have been better.”
In this case, Johnnie might feel encouraged until he heard the word “but.” He might then question the sincerity of the original praise. To him, the praise seemed only to be a contrived lead-in to a critical inference of failure. Credibility would be strained, and we probably would not achieve our objectives of changing Johnnie’s attitude toward his studies.
This could be easily overcome by changing the word “but” to “and.” “We’re really proud of you, Johnnie, for raising your grades this term, and by continuing the same conscientious efforts next term, your algebra grade can be up with all the others.”
Now, Johnnie would accept the praise because there was no follow-up of an inference of failure. We have called his attention to the behavior we wished to change indirectly, and the chances are he will try to live up to our expectations.”

Dale Carnegie wrote this in his book and it couldn’t have been more true.

 

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