Young Upstarts

All about entrepreneurship, intrapreneurship, ideas, innovation, and small business.

When Professional Becomes Personal


It’s true and I found it out the hard way – that Singaporeans don’t take kindly to criticism, however well-intended.

One of my colleagues, who comes to me constantly for “advice” – a.k.a expecting me to make his decisions for him – asked me how he could approach certain areas of his work.  However, after sharing some constructive professional advice, he took personal affront over what I said.  He felt that it was a personal attack and that I was putting him down.


YOU asked me for advice.  I didn’t offer it unsolicited.  If you can’t deal with the truth, DON’T ASK.

Unfortunately, it seems that many organisations – MNCs, small SMEs or even governments – are built similarly.  They go about asking for “feedback” and when they hear things they’d rather not hear, they react like petulant children.  They throw tantrums and slap those who offered them the advice they asked for in the first place. 

I’d name names if I could, but I prefer not to get my pants sued off.  After all petulant people – and organisations – do silly things.

Just like my colleague, who hasn’t spoken to me since. Which is just as well.


Young Upstarts is a business and technology blog that champions new ideas, innovation and entrepreneurship. It focuses on highlighting young people and small businesses, celebrating their vision and role in changing the world with their ideas, products and services.

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