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Your Words Can Make the Difference

By Michael Angier.

"Praise, like gold and diamonds, owes its value to its scarcity." -- Samuel Johnson

In his autobiography, My American Journey, Colin L. Powell tells of an experience when he was a colonel in Korea.

Powell had worked hard to carry out the wishes of his commanding officer, Major General "Gunfighter" Emerson. It was not an order that he agreed with. It was an attempt to impress a visiting dignitary and he felt it was a waste of time and energy for his men. Nevertheless, he dutifully accomplished the assignment.

When the ordeal was finished, Powell felt like a fraud. With his head drooping, he was visibly embarrassed. A first sergeant fell into step with him as he walked away. "That was a hoot, sir, wasn't it?"

"It was stupid," Powell blurted out. "I hate to see the troops do stupid things. And I hate to be the one responsible for it."

The sergeant was quiet for a time. "Colonel Powell, don't worry. We don't know what that was all about. But the men know you wouldn't have cooked up something that dumb on your own. They trust you. They won't hold it against you. We went along because you needed it. Relax, sir."

It was this next paragraph in General Powell's story that struck me. "In all my years in the Army, among all the citations, medals and promotions, I never appreciated any tribute more than I did the sergeant's words at that low point."

Here is one of the most admired and respected men in the world, who was deeply affected by the kind and supportive words of a subordinate. I wouldn't be surprised if that sergeant doesn't even remember saying what he did to Colin Powell that night.

No doubt there have been people in your life who have said something to you that inspired or encouraged you at an important time.

We all affect everyone else. And we rarely know when it's had an impact on someone. What we say, what we do and how we are being, can make a profound impression on others. If we're constantly looking for ways to encourage and support others, we will surely make a difference.

Who can you encourage today?

About the Author

Copyright Michael Angier. SuccessNet.org and WorldClassBusiness.com help you and your business grow. Get their free report 10 Pillars of a World Class Business by sending an email to wcb@SuccessNet.org No-cost subscriptions, memberships, eCourses, eBooks and more are available at http://SuccessNet.org and http://WorldClassBusiness.com.

Tags: Wisdom and Life Skills



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