We live in a culture where most people won’t buy a product or check out a new restaurant without first checking out the online reviews. In a lot of cases, this is good for businesses – it forces them to push themselves to innovate and consistently deliver the best products and services because they know people are watching, talking, and influencing others.

This comes with a downside, however. Reviews don’t always tell the true story.  This is true for consumer review sites, like Yelp, as well as business and company review sites like Glassdoor, where a disgruntled former employer or customer can bring down the overall feedback and potentially turn away new customers and job seekers alike.

Here’s how to mitigate the damage of negative online reviews and take back the power of your reputation.

Read and respond to reviews.

The best way to manage your online reputation is to be part of the conversation. Whether reviews on Glassdoor are positive or negative, you can show potential candidates you take the feelings and concerns of their employees seriously by providing thoughtful, genuine feedback to reviews.

Direct the conversation offline.

You never want to engage in a back and forth online in a review forum. Responding once is important, but if the comment is negative, you don’t want to create a permanent log of an argument between your business and an employee. Saying something like, “I’d love to speak with you more about your experience, please email me or call me” shows you’re paying attention and helps to move the conversation into a less public venue.

Encourage employee reviews.

Don’t wait for bored or vindictive ex-employees to start filling your review feed. If you believe in your business and your culture, ask your team to talk about it. Encourage current employees to post their reviews about their experience working for you. This shows current employees you’re actively listening to their thoughts and ideas and also shows potential newcomers current employees are happy with their employer.

Take the feedback.

In some cases, negative feedback isn’t a past employee firing back for being let go. Negative reviews can reveal something about the health of your organization. If you want to create a truly positive culture that attracts the best talent, pay attention to the feedback you get from employees in your office and online. Addressing the issues they bring forward can help you make positive, lasting changes will keep people around long term.

Finding the best talent takes time. Reviews are part of the modern-day hiring experience, so it’s important to factor that into your search and your overall HR process.

If you need help finding your next hire, get in touch with our team of executive recruiters today.

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