- You get a rude comment on something you post on Facebook.
- Someone DMs you on Instagram with hate (usually with a fake profile)
- Someone anonymously fills out your contact form and tells you you’re terrible.
Is the customer always right?
In a typical customer service world, “the customer is always right”, right?
And I want you to know that that is total and utter bullshit.
When I first started my business, I got really upset by any negative comments I received. But now with over a decade in biz, I have learned that there are negative comments that are constructive, respectful, and that are worth paying attention to in your business so you can do better, and then there are shitty negative comments that don’t deserve an ounce of your attention.
For example — someone calling you into a conversation or lovingly calling you out for something, or someone sending negative feedback about your work or something in your business (done with respect of course). This happened to me recently when I was bringing in an anti-racism educator to speak to our community (click here to sign up for the replay of that), and in the email about it I said something along the lines of “we white coaches need this work”. A BIPOC community member replied and was disappointed and pointed out that I was totally excluding her, and making the assumption that all my readers are white. Ouch – I felt stupid and ignorant, AND was grateful that she took the time to tell me how it made her feel, because I was able to 1) apologize and 2) recognize my bias so that I can make sure it doesn’t happen again. Not all feedback you get will be positive, and that’s ok! It’s what helps us grow.
But then there is trash like this chat message that, honestly, doesn’t even deserve a response. I, however, just can’t help myself – I almost ALWAYS reply.
I don’t believe people should get away with treating others like this just because they are behind a screen and anonymous. I want them to remember that there is a human on the other end.
There are SO many better ways that this person could have asked for my free videos (and it’s worthwhile to take note that these are FREE videos — time and energy I have put into creating useful things for FREE, that this person is demanding access to — geesh)
They could have simply said “Hey Becca! I was on your Instagram and saw that you mentioned free videos, but I can’t find them anywhere – could you please link me to them. I would love to watch!”
And I would have happily looked into what they were talking about, why they were confused, and looked at how we could improve our website to make things easier to find.
And I am sure that I could have responded more politely — “Hey there, I’m sorry that you had trouble finding the videos. Here is the direct link for you. Have a great day”. But is it necessary to always choose the polite way? I would argue no. Sometimes I reply with kindness and end up turning the person around and at the end, they apologize for being rude and thank me. Sometimes, I send a pointed GIF that says everything I need to say. Sometimes I just delete with no response (though rarely lol)
Don’t beat yourself up over it
I am sharing this because you WILL get trolls and haters in your inbox, on social media, and on your website – it’s inevitable. It’s always the ones who aren’t taking the risk or the energy to build anything themselves, that want to hate on those who are.
You don’t have to beat yourself up about it.
You don’t have to go fix anything or worry about it for longer than a millisecond.
Simply reply or delete, and file it away as just another unhappy person who is taking out their bad day or their bad year on you.
And then move along with your awesome self.
PS. The more confidence you have in your business and in what you do, the less you will care about the hateful comments, because you will be able to really stand behind everything you share. If you don’t have that confidence yet, we can help get you there! Check out our Uncage Your Business program that takes you from unclear and unconfident, to shouting what you do from the rooftops loike the boss that you are meant to be.