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Well, he was wearing socks

One of my favorite scenes from The Sopranos is Christopher’s intervention.

The instances that each character brings up tells us as much about the characters as Christopher’s behavior. Adriana, one of the most sympathetic characters in the series, hates that his drug use is impacting their intimacy, and oh, that issue about killing the dog.

The camera work shows Paulie shocked over the “performing as a man” comment while Tony is derailed by the death of Cosette, “I know what it’s like to lose a pet,” referring to the recent demise of Pie-Oh-My. Silvio is disgusted by an episode where Christopher’s hair is in toilet due to vomiting and Carmela is concerned with appearances and brings up Christopher’s pot induced ramble at Livia’s wake.

One of the most difficult things in life and in business is receiving criticism. If you’re reading my blog, chances are you are very committed to customer satisfaction. Small business owners generally are. But things happen.

It’s hard not to stiffen up and become mentally defensive when criticism is directed at us. But here’s something that we can learn from The Sopranos, the issue that is being criticized may tell us something very key about what is important to the customer (in addition to the obvious).

But one of the things I continually struggle with (as do my clients) is what the customer is not telling us. Be thankful for any feedback, even harsh feedback. At least you know where you stand.

There’s a saying that 62% of lost business is due to perceived indifference. I know many companies that work very hard to offer and maintain feedback with customers. But a lot of times customers somewhere between happy and angry – simply don’t share. Perhaps they don’t know what would make it a better working relationship. Perhaps they don’t know what you could be doing that you’re not already doing. I’m not suggesting that you not keep trying.

How do you deal with criticisms of your work? How do you get through to the silent majority? Please share your ideas in the comments section.

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