Responding to Haters
“Most people need Love and acceptance a lot more than they need advice”- Bob Golf.
In rare circumstances, you may want to respond to the people who dish criticism your way. If that is the case, then I think Gary Vaynerchuk provides a good example on how to do it.
When Vaynerchuk published his best selling book, CRUSH, he received dozens of 1-star and 2-star reviews on Amazon. Negative reviewers claimed that the book was “absolutely awful” and called it a “piece of crap with no value whatsoever”. And this was for a book that was a bestseller. Rather than fight back and justify his work, Gary decided to respond to many of the negative reviews with a sincere apology. For example, a reader named Frank left a 1-star review for the book in which he complained, ‘how did this book ever get published?’ Vaynerchuk responded to him by saying;
“Frank I am so so sorry that I under delivered for you, I hope to meet you and spend 15 minutes apologizing and answering any questions you may have, I guess I needed more details in there for you. I am so sorry”
Despite using grammar from a high school text message, Vaynerchuk ended up getting Frank’s phone number and called him to talk things over. After their conversation, Frank wrote the following comment on his book review saying, “If amazon had a people ranking system, I would have to give Gary 5-star. One cannot help being impressed by someone who get back to you so quickly and handles criticism so graciously.”
If you are going to respond to your critics, then getting a response like that should be your goal. Rather than beating the hater back with insult, win them with sincerity. Most people do not want to be convinced that your work is wonderful; they just want to know that you care.
I am very sure that you know this very popular Nigerian hop-up artist called TIMAYA. In one of his songs he said that when he was an up coming artist, almost all the music production industries in Lagos state rejected his songs and refuses to produce his songs. But that did not make him to backslide. Rather, it motivated him to continue working hard and harder until when virtually all the music production industries that said no to him started loving him and want him to come to their industries for production.
This is how it is in all areas of life and endeavors. When your work is rejected or people say it is not good enough, wake-up and work harder, persist and find out what your customers, clients, audience want and make it up to them. Do not try to convince them. Let them know that you really care about what they want and that you are willing to improve and make it up to them.
I have always said that I don’t really have anything figured out. I am not an expert and I don’t have all the answers. I am still learning to deal with criticism like everyone else. It is a skill we have to keep improving on our everyday life.
In my limited experiences, here is what I can summarize about dealing with haters or unsatisfied people.
- First and foremost, don’t be the hater. Don’t be the person who tear down someone else’s hard work. The world needs more people who contribute, their gifts and share their work and ideas. Having the courage to do that can be tough. Support the people who display that courage.
- If you are dealing with criticism, then don’t let the wall keep you from seeing the road. Focus on the path ahead. Another way I heard it put recently, “ignore the boo.” They usually come from the cheap seats. Always know that highly commended people are people that have something to offer. So they know how difficult it is to have something to offer to the world.
- If you choose to respond to the hater, then surprise them with kindness. You might just win more friends. You are at it.
- Finally and more importantly, make the choice that is right for you. People will criticize you either ways.
Author: Marshal Osorachukwu
I’m Marshal Osorachukwu. I am a writer, a swimming Coach.