Back away from the keyboard. Slowly.
With everyone communicating online, human beings can tend to lose our civility while hammering out our feelings on a laptop. When you’re on the receiving end of passionate words, and particularly if you know how to use words with a vengeance, your first reaction may be to construct your own masterpiece of vitriol to lob back across the digital space.
Don’t go there.
Even if you don’t perform customer service via the typed word, taking the high road while engaging online is the absolute best practice all day, every day. Even if it means leaving the laptop or departing from your desk for a few minutes to grab a milkshake or some chocolate, maintaining a digital rep that is calm, cool, and collected is completely worth the wait. (And now you know my secret keys to peace.)
3 Ways to Respond
- Stick to the facts. In the face of heightened emotion, your best bet is to address the details with truth and sources.
- Get another opinion. An objective pair of eyes on your response can ensure you are reducing snark while saving face.
- Pause once more before posting. You’ve got your perfect response ready, but give it another moment before hitting the Post button.
What are your tips or solutions for avoiding reactive responses? Do you need another set of eyes on your drafted reply?
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