As I am starting my own business I have been spending a lot of time watching people who are entrepreneurs. What do they do different than I do? How do that act? What do they say? I am overall looking for ways I want to do and don’t want to do it and places that I need improvement. When I say I am observing people, I mean I am really just observing who they are in the world. Most people I know believe in honesty. We are what I would consider in integrity in the world. However, there is one area I have noticed that somewhat feels out of integrity in my observations of entrepreneurs that I have observed. This is the over or under exaggeration of facts. I have noticed that it comes at different times. When one person was selling their services they stated they had made and lost millions….Fact: that person married and divorced millions. Selling of spiritual guidance, I meditate every day….Fact: that person hadn’t meditated in 3 days. Numbers of hits on websites can be over and under exaggerated depending on the situation. Saying business is going great to a potential client. Telling a competitor that things are slow when, in fact it is not slow at all.
I am slightly confused. Is hyperbole a common business practice? Is it not considered lying when it is just slightly off from the truth? Is it not out of integrity if you are not completely factual about information you are giving when you are courting a client or diverting competition? These are things I need to know. I was not given the pamphlet on how to be the best business owner and leader. My college classes did not teach me how to handle this moral dilemma of hyperbole versus fact. Facts can be cold and harsh sometimes, they do not tell a story that might be more interesting to a client. There is so much competition we are all trying to be bigger and better.
I told a child recently, you do not have to be grandiose around me, I think you are grand just the way you are. I am going to start my business just being grand the way I am. If it doesn’t work…..at least I shall fail grandly!