The Myth of Criticism


Studies showing praise is more effective than criticism: see the bibliography at (Note that it’s not that simple: different kinds of praise are more effective than others, some kinds of praise can be counterproductive, and some kinds of criticism can be productive.)

Studies outlining the bias that leads us to believe negative feedback is more effective than positive feedback:
•    P. E. Schaffner (1985) Specious learning about reward and punishment. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 48, 1377-86
•    D. Kahneman & A. Tversky (1973) On the psychology of prediction. Psychological Review, 80, 237-51
•    Tversky & D. Kahneman (1974) Judgment under uncertainty: Heuristics and biases. Science, 185, 1124-31

Dish soap > vinegar > honey for catching flies:,

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