The Golden Nuggets of Negative Feedback
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Positive or Negative Feedback?
We all love hearing people’s positive feedback telling us how great our blogs are. I love to hear that a principle from this blog helped someone achieve a higher level of success or that something I wrote motivated someone to try something at their site. I enjoy it when people tell me that the site looks great or that they subscribed to the content and are enjoying what they find.
I love hearing those things but the truth is this: critical, negative feedback is usually more helpful. When those people who dislike our sites are willing to tell you why they won’t be back, it is then that you can take that negative feedback to find out what elements you’ve been overlooking.
Most of the time we get discouraged or hurt when someone attacks us or our site. This is the wrong answer. We should happily accept criticisms. We should value people’s complaints like gold and seriously consider every bit of advice regardless how negative the feedback may seem.
Critical Feedback Allows You To Discover the Deficiencies You’ve Been Overlooking
Remember all the times that you’ve complained about the cell phone company, the cable company, the car dealer, or someone else? If they would just change some silly policy then their services would be great but you can’t just call up the president of their company and let them know to adjust something.
You blog is the same way. People get frustrated with it or they don’t like it and they often never take the time to let you know how they feel. So when someone does take that time you need to realize that it is your opportunity to hone your product and create something much better.
Negative Feedback Presents a Decision: Do you want the truth or do you want to feel good?
If you ask a friend to review your site and provide you with some feedback and they tell you that it is great…then they aren’t really helping you. If you ask me to look over your site and provide you with some feedback for improvement then you had better have some thick skin because I will make it my goal to point out what is wrong with it.
It’s not because I think I’m better than you or that my site is amazing. That’s not the point of negative feedback. It’s because I want you to understand what you can do to make your user’s experience more enjoyable. It’s because I want to help you become the success that you have the potential to be.
When I’ve invited my friends to review my site I’ve expected the same kind of brutal honesty. I want the comments that tell me what people like and dislike. I want to know what I can fix and I value people’s criticisms. You should too.
Reflecting Together on Negative Feedback:
How do you respond to critical feedback? Do you delete or ignore negative comments or do you accept and consider them? Are you actively seeking for negative feedback from your peers?