There’s one in every group.
I know, because I’m one of them.
The nit-picking guy who can always find fault; the one who is first to cast a comment, and a negative one at that, on your first foray into anything.
I think I’ve stumbled on a fool-proof method of silencing them, or at least dampening their enthusiasm for pedantic conversation.
Ask Them for Help!
Let’s suppose you’ve just built or revamped your LinkedIn site, and you tweet about it, and you get back as a first comment “You need to build up your profile a lot, Chris”, whereas following comments from others take the form “Nice Job! Welcome aboard!” and similar.
We all know it’s a first effort, right? And there are always corrections and things to do as we learn more, so that first comment is uninformative; a waste of bandwidth.
Here’s the Trick
Bury the negative guy or gal in email.
Send them an email asking for a list of 5 things they think you should do, then do those you feel like doing and ignore the rest. Say why, but be BRIEF.
You don’t want to spend too much time on stuff that’s not profitable; but you want to benefit and learn from things you did not know.
There’s no need to say Please or Thank You in this exchange either; you were prodded into it, remember?
Be consistent. Fire off three emails – spaced an hour or so apart – for each negative comment or response.
If your correspondent has as much brain-power as my cat, they’ll hesitate before casting any sort of comment in future, and you’ll be rid of them.