Image by Spi-V In its Holiday Marketing Best Practices Guide, Amazon coaches online merchants to disregard negative comments until they reach a ratio of 5% of all comments: “Most sellers will eventually receive some negative feedback. When it happens to you, put it in perspective: a 0-2% negative feedback rate is great! If your negative feedback rate is greater than 5%, review your business practices to correct any operational problems that might affect a buyer’s experience.” Amazon has had its fair share of customer service issues over the years. But I agree with the online retailer’s guidance in principle, and use a similar barometer in coaching clients about negative commenting.
I’ve been thing about writing and commenting online lately. Probably more than most, I have a history of mixing it up and leaving a comment or three that left heads spinning. In the past year, I’ve made a move to practice more loving (or benevolent) speech online. Choosing to invest in kinder speech, and to not leave a path of strife on the interwebs requires mindfulness and acceptance of my character defects. I don’t pull punches. When it comes to tough discussions, I fight to win. That means someone’s going to be upset most of the time.