Perception is Everything

I saw a presentation at a BNI Conference a couple years ago by Chick Gallagher, my Executive Director in Delaware and part of Pennsylvania.

In his presentation he talked about “perception” being relative and how small things can substantially alter one’s perception.  On one of his Power Point slides he had the words:

A woman without her man is nothing.

As you might suspect, it got loud boos from the audience.  Then, he added two commas to the wording.  It still fell in disfavor with the audience (especially the women):

A woman, without her man, is nothing.

Finally, without changing any words he simply changed the first comma to a colon and moved the second comma to a different place in order to make this sentence:

A woman: without her, man is nothing.

As you might suspect – this sentence got loud applause from the audience (especially the women).  His point was that small changes in communication can completely alter the meaning of what is being communicated.

Punctuation is like people’s perception. A minor change can make a big difference in how the message is received and understood.

Have you run into this during your lifetime?  If so, share it here. 

ps. Before I posted this blog, I showed it to my wife.  She told me about a FaceBook page called: Let’s Eat Grandma OR Let’s Eat, Grandma.  The site says – see, punctuation saves lives!


5 thoughts on “Perception is Everything

  1. Throughout my working career, I’ve harped on, with some success, that Perception is everything.
    In most cases, our customers want to think that our world revolves around them. To exaggerate; I am thinking about them every waking moment. This can be done by using something like a rolodex, ACT! or other relationship database managers.
    By being able to keep details, have this wonderful “memory” and keep in regular touch makes all the difference. Harvey MacKay has a great Ebook “Roladex” about this very topic.

  2. During the go go years of 2004-2008, I frequently dressed in B Casual clothes for my commercial real estate practice. When the market changed in 2008, I returned to a suit and tie… every day, even Fridays. One of my partners asked, why the change. My response, I have always been serious about my profession, it is time to be perceived that way.

  3. Most of the significant things on the globe have been accomplished by individuals who have maintained trying when there have also been no hope in any respect.
    The quickest way to succeed is usually to look like you’re playing by somebody else’s rules, while quietly playing through your own.

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