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Leadership Thought #261 – Talk Is Cheap


Talk is cheap.  As a sports fan it’s amazing to watch how many individuals talk a big game and then don’t deliver.  In life, business or sports it’s better to let your actions do your talking.  I’m always surprised by players or coaches who draw unnecessary attention to themselves or their teams and literally motivate the opposition through what they say.  Winning games at a professional level is hard enough without putting a bull’s-eye on your back.  When you put yourself on a pedestal all you do is encourage other people to want to knock you off it.

I’m guessing that in many cases when people speak out too loudly about their own capabilities or accomplishments they are in reality somewhat insecure about it.  In all walks of life, talent recognizes and appreciates other talent.  You don’t have to tell your peers what they already know especially if your actions are transparent for all to see.  True self-confidence stems from a history and pattern of hard work, diligence and accomplishment not from self-promoting rhetoric or wishful thinking.  Contrary to current popular belief, thoughts and words are not actions.

The Ancient Greek author Aesop, who is famous for his children’s fables, is credited for the quote, “After all is said and done, more is said than done.”  In my experience, truly successful people are more focused on what they are actually doing instead getting caught up talking about it.  They understand that “talk is cheap.”  It takes genuine courage to act when the task is difficult, risk is comparatively high and few are capable of doing it.   Potential will only ever get you so far in life and will lose its luster quickly.  Leaders deliver what is needed when it is needed not just when it suits them or is convenient.   Genuine motivation almost always stems from within and doesn’t require external validation.  Talk less and do more!

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