If you seek out critics, bureaucrats, gatekeepers, form-fillers, and by-the-book bosses when you’re looking for feedback, should you be surprised that you end up doing the things that please them?
They have the attitude that there is an endless line of cogs just like you, and you better fit in, bow down, and do what you’re told, or they’ll just go to the next person in line.
Without your consent, they can’t hold on to the status quo, can’t make you miserable, can’t maintain their hold on power. It’s up to you. You can spend your time on stage pleasing the heckler in the back, or you can devote it to the audience that came to hear you perform.
—Seth Godin. Linchpin.