Would You Like Some Feedback On That?
One of the more manipulative things someone in your audience can ask is this: would you like some feedback on that?
Because if you say no, you’re the jerk who can’t take criticism.
And if you say yes, you know what’s coming will probably be bad. In theory it could be helpful, but given the sender feels the need to guilt you into it, probably not.
A few years ago when I updated my bio photo, someone in my circle asked me that exact question. When I said “sure”, she then insisted I call her because it couldn’t possibly be delivered via email. Ugh.
Sure enough, her feedback was that my photo just wouldn’t do because my arms were uncovered by a business jacket—and wasn’t that just a tad inappropriate?
I did take the time to politely explain that my audience was not the type to be offended by a bare arm and quickly got off the phone.
Here’s the thing: constructive criticism, delivered in a direct, non-manipulative way is a gift. By all means invite that and then decide case-by-case whether it has merit.
But when you’re feeling manipulated into making someone else feel superior? Not so much.
p.s. Like what you see here? Head on up to that orange box to sign up pronto and I’ll deliver my M-F insights directly to your in-box.