Relationships are tricky and require a lot of tender loving care. Business relationships are no different. Keeping relationships on friendly terms requires transparency, integrity, honesty and communication. It’s often not easy to maintain these qualities as we are all human with human frailties.
Sometimes we are misunderstood. Sometimes we are outright wrong. Sometimes we need to be humble. Sometimes we just try too hard to be perfect and are afraid to let our guard down. This is even more defeating because the more we try to be perfect, the more pressure we’ll feel and the more we fall into negative choices or actions.
Now, I know when we let our guard down we run the risk of being hurt, deceived, cheated, or misled. But isn’t it better to look for positive qualities when we first meet someone rather than enter into every relationship distrusting that person? What chance do they have with that mindset? There’s time to change your mind if and when they show themselves as someone who can’t be trusted and when they do, don’t trash them online…go to them and talk it over.
Poor service happens. Poor decisions happen. None of us are perfect. Often those who have been wronged immediately go online to post what they think about the offender. But think about the damage that can be caused to someone’s reputation by posting an error, poor service or some other negative experience online. What if you’re wrong? What if it was an honest mistake? What if you just have a different version of what happened?
So what do we do when our reputation is trashed online? How do we handle customers or business associates who have exposed our mistakes online? Read this great article with examples of how to handle your reputation online. I’d like to add that cover up is the worst thing you can do. If you delete the comments, it looks like you’re admitting guilt and/or you don’t care about your customers. In addition to the suggestions in the article, I’d like to add…let’s give each other grace! We’re all in this experience called “Life” together. Constructive criticism is healing. Negative, angry criticism is destructive. Isn’t there enough negativity in the world?