what do you say?

by smb on November 11, 2008

We all have moments where we know we should say something.  When we know that what’s wrong, and how to make it right.

Most of the time we don’t say anything.

Sometimes, we don’t say anything because we are petty; there can be a vicarious thrill in watching rivals (or unappreciative allies) falter.  At other times, we stay quiet because it’s strategic; a few saved words now can mean dramatic proclamations and revelations later.  We even remain quiet when we’re bored: too disinterested in what is going on around us to even bother to share our observations.

The worst is when we are mute because we are scared.  Seth Godin, in his new book Tribes, describes with his usual alacrity the profoundly debilitating effects of fear on our potential for leadership.

But there are more important times.  There are the times that we choose to speak.

There are times we speak because we know we have something to add.  We put our thoughts to words when we know that it may make a difference.  We raise our voices when it can propel our success, or avert tragedy.  We risk sharing our initial thoughts, even when they aren’t perfectly formulated, because we believe enough in our instincts, and the instincts of those around us.

We speak, and keep on speaking, because nothing changes when you are quiet.


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