Tag Archives: critic

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inner critic

Using Your Critic To Guide Your Inner Compass

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What guides your inner compass? What moves you more, the compliment, or the feedback that suggests improvement? Perhaps it should be some of both.

Recently I was using an experiential learning activity with a small group of people from many different parts of the United States. During the activity debrief I said, “compass” and one of the participants from the Chicago area said, “Wait, say that again.”

Unsure of what he was referring to I asked, “Which part?”

He politely said, “The word compass.”

There was a difference in our dialect. I didn’t notice, but he did. He pronounces the word different from me, more of “come pass.” He wasn’t trying to be a critic, but he did notice something different.

Blend In or Be Different

People often fear being different.

In our workplace, we are often taught to adapt, to blend in, and to be a good fit. Certainly, this has tremendous value. After all, the CEO insists on the hiring manager finding someone who will fit. I am not suggesting that is a perfect plan, but it does often happen.

Since we want to fit, we adapt, we learn that we should blend in. We believe we should be what the organization needs and not who we are. This isn’t necessarily bad, in fact, it is the norm. However, when we give the critic inside ourselves too much power we may lose.

Risk Assessment

There is risk involved. We may risk politely speaking up in a meeting, risk sharing our knowledge, ideas, or suggestions.

It is the critic we once heard, the person who corrected us. Corrected our language, our thoughts, and guided us to a way of doing things.

This is certainly important in society. It guides social norms and keeps in check what is right from what is wrong.

Does it also stifle our true abilities? Will it slow innovation and limit our contributions?

Inner Compass

Our inner compass is powerful, but you are still in control. What guides us is important. The trick is to know when to follow your inner compass and when to choose a different path.

Right from wrong, morals, and ethics, are probably good reasons to pay close attention to true North. Your creativity, ideas for improvement, and the chance to make a positive and impactful difference, you may want to consider a little freestyle.

Your critic is only as powerful as you allow.

– DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is a five-time author and some of his work includes, #CustServ The Customer Service Culture, and Forgotten Respect, Navigating A Multigenerational Workforce. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


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learning customer service

Learning Customer Service Is Important

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There is always a critic about customer service. People say hindsight is twenty-twenty. Is learning customer service important?

Talk to anyone long enough and they’ll share a bad customer service experience. It is easy to analyze the game after it is over.

Customers Matter

It is in the mission statement, the plague on the wall, and clever meme that is on the poster. Organizations always claim that customer service matters.

Show the customer that we care.

Take care of the customer.

Our customers are number one.

Understanding the Critic

The critic does not represent the truth about customer service or the customer experience. What the critic knows, says, or does is not representative of the knowledge of the team.

Knowing how a screwdriver works and being able to use one with precision are two different things.

Delivering exceptional customer service is a skill. When we understand that it is a skill then we also recognize that it can be built, developed, and shaped.

People often quickly scoff at the idea of learning more about customer service because they believe they already know it, and after all, they can point out all the mistakes of others.

The loudest critics may need the most development. Not because they don’t know what it is, but because they aren’t on the field delivering.

Learning Customer Service

Sometimes the learning part is not about what the tool is used for, but it is about how the tool is used. This includes when, where, and the management of circumstances and situations.

There is a difference between screaming from the bleachers, yelling at the television, or commanding it from the C Suite.

Organizational commitment and a culture of the service experience starts with learning but it is only made possible from action on the field. It will take more than knowing what the tool is used for and being a critic when the tool slips.

Learning customer service is always important. It starts inside the organization long before it is delivered outside.

– DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is a five-time author and some of his work includes, #CustServ The Customer Service Culture, and Forgotten Respect, Navigating A Multigenerational Workforce. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


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your work count appreciative strategies

Making Your Work Count and Outlasting Critics

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People start their work every day. Every day they may question why am I doing this, why does it matter, and why do people only care enough to find fault. Do you make your work count? Does it speak for itself?

There are days when it feels like everyone is a critic. The project your team worked tirelessly on, the new idea you mentioned at the meeting or the marketing campaign that you know will be a huge success.

Some critics may be trying to be helpful, some are jealous, and some see you growing and they don’t like it because they now have to move up or move on. Your worst critic, sooner or later, they will find someone else to give their attention to, because you’ve moved on.

Different is Better than Average

When you work with the intent to make your work count, to make a difference, to advance the team, it becomes momentum. It is hard to stop momentum. In fact, that may be exactly what critics are calling for. They want to slow the train.

Your work will count the most when it is unique. It is hard to pick the best donut from a rack of two dozen. It is hard to find the nicest rose in the bunch. The work you do, the accomplishments of your team, or the success of your organization will benefit the most when it’s not the same, but different.

Unfortunately, trying something new is exactly what the critic wants to stop. It is different, odd, ugly, or simply won’t work. Especially when the critic suggests that, others have tried it in the past.

The critic invites the challenge to prove them wrong.

Does Your Work Count

You’ll make your work count when you dare to be different. When you dare to improve the quality, the delivery, and the customer experience.

Critics will tell you a different story, but you’ll outlast them.

Critics have little patience for progress.

– DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is a five-time author and some of his work includes, #CustServ The Customer Service Culture, and Forgotten Respect, Navigating A Multigenerational Workforce. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


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Are You Your Worst Critic, or Best?

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You came up short on your life goal, you narrowly missed being selected for the promotion, or a gigantic roadblock appeared that you didn’t expect. Are you your worst critic, or best?

your worst critic

As people we often see the worst in ourselves. We punish ourselves for coming up short, making a mistake, or narrowly missing an opportunity. Here is the brutal truth, don’t be so hard on yourself.

Your Worst Critic

Yesterday a dear friend shared something very private with me. It was something that he has carried for more than 30 years. With his head lowered and a never before heard softness in his voice, he expressed some of his pain.

While his story was difficult and upsetting to him my immediate reaction was that this situation was not his downfall, but it was his gift. (Just for the record, he is quite successful but he doesn’t always see it that way.)

This situation shaped his life and has made him a very positive force in all that he does and all that he pursues. It is his motivation, his driving force, and he uses it for the greater good of mankind. I celebrate him by writing this, but he might have his head down still caught up in the moments of discomfort or pain that he still carries to this day. What do I believe? I believe he is truly great.

Best Critic

Here are a few tips to help you keep your life in perspective:

  1. Be authentic. You aren’t anyone else, and no one else is you. Own any mistakes, but never let them slow you down, you’re only passing up future opportunities if you do.
  2. Stay positive. Staying positive is not telling yourself, “I am positive.” Staying positive is living and viewing all of life through a different lens. If your self-talk is about everything that went wrong, or everything that you expect will go wrong, no amount of stating that you are positive will take you there.
  3. Perfect is unreasonable. Perfection like beauty is often measured in the eye of the beholder. While you may see something as perfection, others might find fault. Stop lowering your self-esteem by comparing yourself to someone else. Measure against your own past performances or strive for improvement.
  4. Remind yourself of past accomplishments. Your life will be full of ups and downs, highs and lows. I don’t know of a single success story that doesn’t include some of both. Any ups and downs during a 12 month window might only represent a little over 1% of your life. Pick yourself up and get back on track.
  5. Someone might tell you that you can’t. There are always people who will tell you that you can’t achieve more. Instead of listening to them and allowing their prophecy to manifest inside you, turn it around and allow it to be your motivation to prove them wrong.

I really don’t like the word criticism. It is one of the harshest and most demoralizing words used when people intend to help someone improve.

If you want to be someone’s critic, try being your own. Don’t be your worst critic.

This is one place (of many) where you can truly be your best.

– DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is a four-time author and some of his work includes, Forgotten Respect, Navigating A Multigenerational Workforce and Pivot and Accelerate, The Next Move Is Yours! Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


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Arm Chair Leadership

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You can criticize the leader for being too soft, too harsh, or out of touch with reality. The trouble with this criticism is that often it is coming from those who aren’t responsible for the results.

senior business man with his team at office

When the apple cart has tipped over it is easy to suggest it was loaded wrong, managed by the wrong people, or trying to go too fast. Chances are good that those observations aren’t coming from the people responsible for the carts arrival.

Leadership has a lot of challenges, one is to obtain results and another is setting a good example. It might be suggested then that understanding what is necessary to obtain results and how to set the proper example comes not only from experience, but also from being responsible.

On the other hand, the experience of the critic often comes from the reckless behavior of perfecting the irresponsible critique. While the critique may build a following this following is not built by a leader.

Leaders know the difference.

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and coach that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is the author of the newly released book, Forgotten Respect, Navigating A Multigenerational Workforce. Reach him through his website at DennisEGilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.


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