Whenever you start a new business, unsolicited pieces of advice will bombard you from all corners. Many people will take it upon themselves to advice you on how to run your business even those who have no experience in business.
But how do you deal with the people whose advice you don’t want to implement without offending them? Let us have a look at a few ways to handle this:
You need not to argue, just be polite. You may easily be tempted to become very defensive and in the process get in to a long battle tying to prove that you are right and they are wrong. Keep your cool and just steer the conversation to a new topic. You don’t want to waste your time in an argument that may end up damaging your relationship with a friend.
Most unsolicited pieces of advice come from people who genuinely care; they want the best for you and your business. So even if you know the advice is misguided, take it in stride, just say “thank you” and move on. Rather than push them away, let them feel like they are contributing to your success.
Listening to these people will not harm you, after all some of their advice might be of help to you. Be a gracious listener, take in what they say and assess whether they fit your goals and values.
Don’t allow the advice to persuade you, but listen and take the determination afterwards.
Remember all advice is useful especially when they come in form of suggestions from people who think differently. You need to be open to different perspectives bearing in mind that you don’t have solutions to everything. If you don’t chose to act on the advice, let it go; but remember ant thoughtful commentary is worth your consideration.
Everyone colors their advice with their own experiences and biases, listen to them, appreciate their time and decide what to do on your own.
And as you do the listening, sift through the advice, extract the wisdom that might be hidden in the speech and refocus on solving your customers’ problems. Don’t be swayed by the advice since the interest of your customers must come first. Extracting wisdom from a junk is a very powerful skill that you need to learn.
Also remember to thank those who advice you. They give the advice because they care and want to help you. Thank them for whatever advice they give, whether you intent to implement it or not. Thanking them means your appreciate their concern, and it is a good gesture.
Even if you don’t like says, you can convert them to be your customers depending on how you handle. Business is about attracting and retaining customers and everyone matters. This would be a great opportunity to change your ‘advisor’ to your customer.
Lastly, when one advice has been given to you over and over by different people, you should give it a consideration. They might be hinting at some deeper issue or opportunity that’s worth understanding. Not so many people can be wrong on the same issue. Still the final decision lies in your hands.