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September 17, 2019

It’s Miami Spice time!

In honor of the annual 60-day excuse to ignore the existence of calories, I can’t think of a better topic than who has the best spice menu?  No, really.  With over 200 restaurants to choose from, we’d love to hear your recommendations to which meal comes out on tops.  Personally, I’m partial to Sips — the only Historic Overtown restaurant on the list!

Before Yelp, making the decision about where to eat—let alone which Spice menu provides the most value—could result in an epic battle of preferences.  But now, with the help of crowdsourced ratings and commentary detailing one’s anticipated experience, restaurant selection is (somewhat) of a breeze.

Let’s face it. review culture is the new norm. Before Amazon, I wouldn’t dare fall victim to mail-order products. Chances were, the result could be hit or miss:

Thinking back to the pre-Trip Advisor era, I’m can barely remember how I made travel decisions. (Well, Lonely Planet was the go-to back then). 

So this week, our inquiry extends to a universally uncomfortable, yet critically important experience: getting feedback.

Yelp, 360 surveys, or other crowdsourced evaluative frameworks  offer insights on four (4) feedback rules to live by– best understood in the form of old school pop songs (sorry, these ballads definitely pre-date any Gen Zers reading this post):

Don’t Speak

Yes, Gwen Stefani was on to something.  So was your mother.  Not everyone abides by the idiom, if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all. Yet, negative feedback isn’t the end of the world.  Certainly, there are many types of criticism, but not every review will be a glowing recommendation.  While you may refuse to give credence to unfounded critiques, particularly the kind the  skips the good and settles right between the bad and the ugly, always consider the silver lining.  Instead of going on the defensive , appreciate the importance of knowing where you stand.

Don’t Take It Personal

This sage advice has been passed down for generations, transcending Monica’s pop song references about “one of dem days” to renowned self help must read, the Four Agreements:  don’t take it personally.  Too often, we internalize negative comments as judgment against ourselves.  In this sense, we forget a fundamental purpose of feedback is to illuminate areas of opportunity and improvement.  The next time you encounter a constructive critique, ask what is this feedback trying to teach me?

That Don’t Impress Me Much

Sure, Shania Twain is not easily impressed, but perhaps you should be.  Though we have the tendency to scrutinize positive feedback, it’s ok to accept praise.  You deserve it! Instead of downplaying your wins, treat compliments as validation of your hard work and solid investment in your craft.  One of the greatest gift we can give others is to receive with grace and without qualification.

My Prerogative

Bobby Brown, you could’ve said it better! When we remove the positive/negative, or constructive/destructive lens, feedback is nothing more than a response.  It is inherently subjective, and never truly objective.  So interpret what you hear with a grain of salt.  The beauty of any feedback loop is you decide when and where it ends.  Take or leave as much or as little as you wish– it’s your prerogative.

Cheers,

Leigh-Ann / Venture Cafe Miami

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