The way you communicate is an important part of maintaining a positive public image. Through your interactions, people form opinions about who you are, your intentions and whether you can be trusted. Once someone forms an initial opinion of you, it’s difficult for them to change that impression. That’s why it’s essential to understand the power of your words. The news is filled with stories of how a prominent person has said something that may cost them their job, customers or relationships. Across industries, there are instances where individuals say whatever comes to their minds without any thought of how their audience would be affected or the consequences that follows. Very recently we have seen this type of behavior in the sports, entertainment and political worlds. There are too many instances to count that I have shaken my head and wondered What were they thinking? It was just a couple of years ago that a former sports owner’s poor choice of words overshadowed what is one of the greatest sports events in the world. The fallout was intense as he was forever banned from attending the games of the team he once owned. The owner argued that he spoke these words during a private heated discussion. He reasoned that everyone has more or less made racist comments before and no matter how disgusting the comments, he should not be required to sell the team. I’ve read that this was not the first time this particular owner made these types of comments and that he should be have been banned from the League a long time ago.