Lafayette Lavender Sachet from ZiBagz.
Networking is a scary world for business owners, especially artists since they tend to have stronger personalities. You never know what’s going to happen. You could easily waste a lot of your time or meet the greatest partner ever at the same event or on the same social network. And sometimes, things get a little ugly.
It’s been a few months since I had an altercation with a business friend of mine. I won’t go into deep detail to preserve her right to privacy. But I will say that I idolized her a little and when she disappointed me, I impulsively lashed out. It was a really poor decision – one that I think about frequently, learning more and more about why I reacted the way I did and how I could’ve controlled the situation better.
I think healthy debate is good. A little controversy kicks things up, gets people thinking, and hey! It even gets your name out there more! But if the debate isn’t so friendly… if things quickly turn ugly, well then I think it’s our responsibility as human beings to step back and diffuse the situation. I think it’s an important aspect of our humanity to be kind to others, even when they disagree.
And frankly, people will disagree. No matter how hard you try to surround yourself with people who think just like you, someone will still disagree. You can’t take it personally when people have different views on politics, raising children (or pets!), or even running a business.
So there’s a maturation required here. We have to teach ourselves to not feel offended by differing opinions. We have to learn the signs that things are heating up too much. And we have to remind ourselves to step back.
It’s never worth it to ruin a friendship just to argue more about your own beliefs. [Tweet that!]
Those lessons are key for me. How do they resonate with you? I hope they help you avoid your own mistake when navigating the world of networking with your art business.