For the most part, Twitter is a friendly place. There’s something about the connecting process between two strangers on a social network that encourages both of them to act in a polite and civil manner.

(As an aside, this can often contrast quite sharply with how our so-called real friends behave.)

However, from time-to-time, often regardless of how well you conduct yourself, things are going to get ugly. Indeed, it’s fair to say that the better you get at doing it right, the more likely it is that you’ll start to develop a sub-following of critics and haters, all of whom will gladly go out of their way to tell you that you’re actually doing it wrong. At least, in their opinion.

For you, this is actually a positive. It means you matter. As Colin Powell once said:

“Good leadership involves responsibility to the welfare of the group, which means that some people will get angry at your actions and decisions. It’s inevitable if you’re honourable. Trying to get everyone to like you is a sign of mediocrity. You’ll avoid the tough decisions, you’ll avoid confronting the people who need to be confronted, and you’ll avoid offering differential rewards based on differential performance because some people might get upset.”

While it’s often true that haters are actually some of your biggest fans in disguise, a growing number of them will be unpleasant, often seemingly bitter people, arguing endlessly and clearly for the sake of it. It’s a trap, and no matter how hard you try, sometimes you’re going to get caught.

It’s these folks I want to address in this article, and in doing so I’d like to pay homage to the words of the great philosopher James Dalton, whose guidance seems very appropriate here.

When push comes to shove, you'll need to ask yourself - what would Dalton do?

When push comes to shove, you’ll need to ask yourself – what would Dalton do?

All you have to do is follow three simple rules. Read more