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Being Nice May Be Cruel

By Marty Nemko

I spent my first 23 years in New York City, the last 28 in California. While there are plenty of exceptions, on average, Californians are "nicer," reluctant to criticize you--at least to your face. You may suffer as a result. Direct feedback, even if unsolicited, can help you grow while criticism behind your back, can devastate your career. Bob Rosner, author of Working Wounded, says, "Friends stab friends in the front." When you get criticized, your first reaction may be to want to kill the messenger. Hold off. That messenger may, in fact, be kinder than a "nice" person.

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