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Don’t Criticize People – Do This Instead


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    The next time you try to get people to change their habits by criticizing and blaming them you may want to strongly reconsider.

    If we are honest with ourselves (and few of us are), even we never blame ourselves for things that go wrong.

    Criticize someone and you create a defensive person. Even though you might think that the feedback will help them. It never does.

    Instead, tell them it is not their fault and now open to influence & change by you.

    Everyone tells us we are to blame when things go wrong in our lives. When someone comes along and tells us we are not to blame we are inexplicably drawn to them and more open to any future requests they might make.

    “Don’t criticize, condemn or complain.”

    “Give honest and sincere appreciation.”

    “Arouse in the other person an eager want.”

    Dale Carnegie, How To Win Friends & Influence People

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    Dale Carnegie, How To Win Friends & Influence People

    Master Persuaders can get people aligned with them even before making a request.

    Next time when you are tempted to criticize (even in the name of feedback), remember that you will be better at driving change if you focus only on the good aspects of what people do. Most of us already know what we are not good at. We don’t care much for people who point out our mistakes. Even if they think they are helping us.

    The only way to get people to actually improve is to relentlessly point out all the good they do. Try this on your kids and watch how they prosper in school and other activities. No criticism, only praise.

    Shaun Mendonsa, PhD is an influencing expert and pharmaceutical development leader. He writes on the topics of influence and persuasion, and develops next generation drugs in human pharma by advising international pharmaceutical CROs and CMOs. He can be reached at


    Change Management, Career Development, Leadership Tips

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