As Good As Our Word

What we say and what we do is a reflection of our honesty and integrity. In our business and social world, our reputation is built on our commitment to honor our agreements and promises. In essence, our word is a contract that holds us to an agreed obligation.

A few years ago I was involved in a large event and one of the food vendors agreed to donate the food. The menu was agreed on by the event coordinator and the food vendor.   As we got closer to the event I asked if anyone had followed up with the food vendor. My friend told not to worry about it. He said he was good friends with the vendor, had known him for years, and he was a man of his word. On the day of the event, as it grew closer to the start time I asked again and was told the vendor would be there. He never showed up, never called, and when the event coordinator called his friend, no one at the vendor’s establishment knew anything about our event and the vendor was out of town on a camping trip.

The results were immediate. We had no food for the event. The long-term results were a bad reflection on the event, the event coordinator, the restaurant that did not send the advertised food and a loss of trust and credibility on many levels. He was not as good as his word. Our trust and loyalty to him were lost.

Our word is currency. It stands for the value of who we are. It is a trust builder, a loyalty builder, and a relationship builder. As with all currency, we should be mindful as to how we spend it. Our words are an investment in all of our relationships, both our work and personal relationships. We must be committed to its reliability and credibility.


Credibility is a keystone of relationship building. Our word must stand the test of time. It is okay to say no and still retain the trust and loyalty. If our word is a commodity then we must invest it wisely.

“Once your word is broken you don’t have much to say for yourself.”

~Jerry Bruckner


Larry Tyler
Larry Tyler
Awaken the possibilities … then unleash them. After 55 years of successful retail management, I have returned to my passion of writing. I write Poetry, Storytelling, and Short Stories. As a child, I grew up on front porch storytelling. I would sit and listen to my Dad and his brothers tell these great stories that were captivating, and I always wanted to hear more. I wanted to experience the things they talked about. I started writing at a young age and reading everything I could get my hands on. At twelve years old I started a storytelling group and several of my friends became writers or poets. At 16 I hopped box cars and worked the tobacco fields, orange groves, picked cotton, and spent many nights around a campfire listing to life stories. Someone once asked me why I wrote. It consumes an amazing amount of time and I assure you it is not going to make me rich. I write so that my children can touch and feel my words telling of the ones that came before us and the stories they told me. These are the chronicles of our family and even though they come from my childhood memories and are deeply rooted in a child’s remembrance at least they may feel what it was like in the time before them and cherish the things the elders left behind. I am a Columnist & Featured Contributor, BIZCATALYST360 and I have The Writers Café, a group on LinkedIn that features Poets, Writers, Artists, Photographers, and Musicians . On Facebook I have two groups and one page; Dirt Road Storytelling, From Abandoned To Rescue Dogs And Cats, and About Life, Love And Living. As writers, it is true that we honestly do not know what we hold within us until we unleash it. When our words inspire others only then will inspiration return to the writer. I will spend my twilight years in search of the next story, the next poem, and the next image. I will take the time to enjoy my Wife, our Dogs, and Cats, and our amazing new home and I will always find the time to walk down a dirt road I truly hope is that I never have to read another book on Leadership, be on a conference call or see another plan o gram as these were the tool for what I did in life and not about who I am.

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  1. Ever since I can remember my Father always said, boy you have three things in life. Your credit, you’re word and your good name. In the days of past generations a man’s word was as good as his signature but today society has thrown that by the wayside mostly out of greed and self centeredness. We live in a very dangerous world and one that makes me very suspect in everything I do. But then again a bad divorce after 20 years doesn’t exactly build trust. I try to abide by the Lords belief in forgiveness even when I may trust and be disappointed.

  2. Every day we are increasingly witnessing an apparently innocuous phenomenon which, in reality, is the basis of personal and social disasters. This phenomenon consists in the inability to keep the word given.
    In the past, the value of a person was measured by how much his words corresponded to the facts. And indeed, if you reflect for a moment, it is easy to realize how words make sense only because they are the “symbol” of something real or that, at least, we believe that they correspond to reality. In the moment in which, however, the words lose their function as “representatives of reality”, here we see them become, as they say, “words only”, simple sounds that in the long run are particularly annoying even if only to be heard. And emptying of meaning, the words pronounced end up emptying sense, value and utility even he or she who pronounces them.

    • Thank you Aldo I agree. It seems people also have trouble with the truth. But that’s another article.

  3. I work with a lot of people that love making commitments; yet when the time comes to perform they say that other things come up. This used to bother me since when I say I’m going to do something, I am going to do it.

    Now, you have an option to tell someone that you really need something by Friday or else you’re going to get in trouble. That doesn’t work as often as I’d like. What I found that works more often than not is when I say I will do something for Monday evening, another thing on Tuesday evening, and another by Wednesday. I then do it and meet each commitment. By Friday that other person will give me something. It may not be everything I need, but it will be something.

    You can’t get someone to change their behavior by telling them. You have to show them a behavior they can emulate.