Friday, September 11, 2009

Is your mouth costing you money?

Posted By on Fri, Sep 11, 2009 at 11:37 AM

click to enlarge pd_arguing_080129_ms

I’m not a man of few words. I never have been, nor will I ever be. But when I speak, I try to make sure that I speak with a purpose, and I substantiate my facts. Doing otherwise is just blabber, and I really don’t have the time to indulge in that. Don’t get me wrong. When I’m hanging out with my friends, we have totally senseless conversations at times, just like anyone else. But even those are limited. Quite often, we have very poignant and diverse conversations.

I tell you this for a reason. There is a time and place for senseless rhetoric and during business isn’t it. I’m not saying every conversation has to be profound and thought-provoking. But during the workday, a majority of your conversation should be of some substance. In addition, if you are going to engage in conversation, have at least a moderate knowledge of the topic — especially if you are going to get into a debate over it.

I was just in a sports bar the other day, and I heard some guys arguing about the president speaking to the kids. The conversation got pretty heated — as many political conversations do. So that didn’t surprise me. But what did surprise me was the fact that the guy who opposed it didn’t have a single fact to substantiate his argument. He was just anti-Obama, and it was obvious. That’s not new to me either. I see a lot of that. What really caught my attention, and opened my eyes was a statement from a fellow spectator.

He made the following statement: “I really don’t have a problem with the president speaking to children. That’s neither here nor there, but I didn’t realize how ignorant this guy is. He’s my financial adviser, but I think I’ll be seeking a new one.” I saw him this morning, and he has a new financial adviser — same firm, new advisor.

That got me to thinking ... If you are going to have a debate with someone, have knowledge of the subject matter. You can make a lot of money with your knowledge, but you can also lose a lot of money. Ask yourself, how often do you engage in a public argument without a good basis of fact. Is that argument really worth winning?

Until next time … God Bless and dress well.

William Wilson is a nationally respected men’s clothier and image consultant. His clients include professional athletes, CEOs, and corporations. His homepage is Follow William on Twitter: or on Facebook at

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