This is something I wish I knew in my 20’s but I often encounter much older people that have not learned this lesson. Quick question: When should you open your mouth?
It’s so easy to get dragged into fights online and some people actually have business models to bait you into exchange of words you’d likely regret later. Why? It drives traffic and gets you to click on the ads of the people that pay them to run those sites. That’s their business, but do you want to go down to that level? Respectfully, it doesn’t really matter when you think about it.
If your pile of cash will get larger by the statement you are about to make, you should open your mouth or make a comment. In all other situations you should remain silent. There are no exceptions.
The temptation to offer an opinion is always there. If you feel compelled to do so, make it something of value. Start a blog, make a point, offer an opinion and present a complete thought.
I know that a lot of people tend to get bored with the repetitive tasks in the office and the manufactured drama is sometimes a welcome distraction. But remember that it’s manufactured. As silly as a company must feel as it writes comments for their partners and asks them to post a rant, so would be the supposed competitor that happens to have a similar product. In business, you don’t sit around the board room table throwing darts at your competitors, you work on a solution or product you believe you can sell. But that’s work, that’s not exciting or sensational and it doesn’t make people click the ads. So when you’re trying to figure out if you’re a sucker that’s gonna play along or not remember to ask yourself: Will what I’m about to do make me more money? If not, move on.
Or write a blog post about it and show other people how to decide. 🙂