Leadership Communication Expert

What’s Your Potential to Be Profound as a Leader?

Words can change lives, careers, and organizations forever. Because of words, leaders have fallen. Businesses have gone bankrupt. Wars have killed thousands. But most of us won’t be talking to heads of state or CEOs. We’re talking to the people next door, our brother-in-law, and the coworker in the next cubicle.

I’ve lost more sleep over words than from any illness, work, or obligation in my life. Words that I wish I’d said and didn’t. Words that I’ve said and wished I hadn’t. Words that others have said to me that cut deep. Words that others didn’t say to me that still managed to leave a hole in my psyche. Words that rolled off my tongue too quickly.  Words that I swallowed and held onto far too long.

Let me get more specific about the power of words to change the course of lives, families, and organizations:

 The Power of Positive Words

With positive words, we can accept, admire, admit, advise, affirm, apologize, bridge, build, calm, challenge, cheer, clarify, comfort, compliment, counsel, defend, discover, dispel fear, encourage, enlighten, evaluate, explain, extend, forgive, free, heal, include, inspire, introduce, lead, model, mold, nourish, persuade, plan, praise, pray, predict, prepare, reveal, support, thank, trust, uplift, warn, and welcome.

And the wonderful thing about positive words is that they’re not fattening, expensive, or scarce.  You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to spit them out.

 The Damage of Negative Words

But unfortunately, negative words creep into business transactions and conversations—particularly those about performance. With those, we alarm, cajole, cast doubt, blame, complain, confuse, cripple, criticize, deceive, delay, diminish, disappoint, discourage, disillusion, divide, embarrass, embellish, exclude, frighten, gossip, insult, judge, lie, limit, manipulate, mislead, mock, nag, needle, paralyze, punish, rattle, reject, sabotage, scold, stereotype, trap, and trouble our colleagues, clients, and family.

 Easy Access Doesn’t Equal Lightweight

The sum total of your life’s relationships—and influence—rests on your day-in and day-out use of words.  Not at the big event.  Not during momentous occasions.  But in those simple conversations.

Everybody has access to words–tools of insight, innovation, and influence.  Common conversations can be profound.

Dianna Booher

Dianna Booher is the bestselling author of more than 46 books, published in 26 languages, with nearly 4 million copies sold. Her personal development topics include communication, leadership, personal presence, productivity, life balance, and faith. Her latest books include Creating Personal Presence: Look, Talk, Think, and Act Like a Leader and Communicate With Confidence, Revised and Expanded Edition. National media such as Good Morning America, USAToday, the Wall Street Journal, Investor’s Business Daily, Bloomberg, Forbes.com, CNN International, NPR, Success, and Entrepreneur have interviewed her for opinions on critical workplace communication issues. She is the founder of Booher Consultants, an international communication training company and more recently Booher Research. Clients include IBM, Lockheed Martin, Raytheon, BP, Chevron, Pepsico, Frito Lay, Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital, JP Morgan Chase, American Airlines, and Department of the Navy. www.BooherResearch.com