24 April 2007

Walking and Talking

This week finds me taking a break from my normal work to rub shoulders with others in my profession, speaking geek with a passion.
The ultimate result of shielding men from the effects of folly is to fill the world with fools.
-Herbert Spencer, English Philosopher (1820-1903)
One thing that becomes readily apparent whenever there are this many technobabblers in the same space is the difference between those who can talk the walk and those who can only walk the walk.

It is easy to overlook how wide the disparity between these two camps can grow.


Anonymous said...

what does that really mean.... "walk the walk and talk the talk" ... sorry didnt understand :((

Tempus Fugate said...

Your talk is what you know or speak about something. To talk about something means you can speak about it. It is generally accepted that to know something of a subject you must be able to articulate that knowledge.

Your walk is what you actually do or accomplish. You can know about something but not be effective at using or applying that knowledge.

To talk the talk means you can speak about or you understand something that sounds good or is accepted as cool or interesting. This is different than being able to actually act on or use that information.

To walk the talk means you are actually doing the things you profess to believe or stand for. This generally refers to someone who absorbs information and puts it into practice while encouraging others to do the same.

To walk the walk means you are doing what is generally considered to be good or right, cool or interesting. This may be interchangeable with walking the talk, but is usually reserved for someone who is more concerned with the walk then the talk. For example, they may deliver consistently but don't feel the need to prattle on about it.

Consider some examples:

If someone wrote a book on a subject but had never applied that knowledge in a real-world situation we would say they Talk the Talk, but don't Walk the Talk.

If someone consistently performed a service but did so without expectation of recognition and without a fuss, we would say they Walk the Walk.

If someone was meeting real-world needs or performing services and also teaching and encouraging others in how to do the same that person would be Walking the Talk.

I hope this helps.

Anonymous said...

yes it helped lots... it makes perfect sense.... thanks