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    How I dealt with criticism when starting my own business

    By Mark Palmer|7th Dec 2017
    Are you wondering how to deal with the discouraging criticism coming from the people around you and in social media platforms? Aren’t they supposed to be your supporters? 
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    It doesn’t matter how well you give your products or how efficiently you run your business, you and your business will still receive those negative critics. Although it isn’t easy to hear negative comments, none of them should stop you from progressing in your business, or even make you quit.

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    You must be careful when handling such criticism since they have a chance to ruin the reputations of your business. Nonetheless, such criticisms, when discussed in open social platforms, will give your business a chance to refrain from such negativities, thus earning your business more respect thenceforth.

    Be a Good Listener

    Being a good listener will allow you to hear what is being discussed and what is concerning your business or your products. Within your vicinity, there could be forums where people gather for any function, and in the midst of such events, people will review your business and products. You may be having salespeople who interact with customers on a one-on-one basis. These are the people who hear first-hand talks from the general population about your business. Check your social media pages frequently to see what comments people write about your business, track when your business is mentioned on Twitter and other online platforms like Google by activating alerts on these media.

    Respond Only When Necessary

    Occasionally, you may feel hurt by the negative comment posted on your business page and you can be tempted to respond right away in the heat of the moment. You may even think of deleting that post. Always know that not all negative criticisms deserve your response. Some individuals post such harsh reviews of your business just to attract attention. Such comments are always rude, and you don’t need to respond to them since you will heighten the already-created attention on an issue that, in most cases, don't involve your business.

    Always think twice before responding to a negative comment, more often than not, don't put any reply. Similarly, some individuals are bold enough to face you with verbal negative comments. The simple rule is, stop, and don't respond unless you can do it nicely and tactfully.

    Be Tactful

    In as much as there are these negative commentators, your business has loyal customers too. When you come across a complaint or negative review, do not cultivate a discussion around it by trying to justify yourself. It is simple, tell the person who commentated that their complaint has been received, and you are looking into the problem. Give them hope that you are coming up with a solution for it even if you don’t have a specific plan to deal with the complaint at that very moment.

    Acknowledge the criticism

    For the success of your business, always value all your customers, including those giving negative comments. Never allow your business to lose even a single client. Once a client, always a client.

    To make your clients feel appreciated, never disregard their complaints or ideas. Know that the client is always right. After acknowledging them, take the next step and take some action.There is a reason for every comment or complaint, but you may discover that it was due to a petty misunderstanding. Strive to retain all your customers and add more. Be aware that clients have other business they can get the products or the services from. So don’t mock them so they may not reconsider going back to the checkweigher to find the best business to transact with.

    Apologize sincerely

    If you over hear people speaking negatively about your business, don't always try and place the blame on someone else.It actually could be your business and their criticism could help make your business great, so instead of going about it defensively, apologize for the mistakes and ask how you can become a better business. 

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