I've had a lot of things on my mind recently, not the least of which is the upshot I got from reading Harry Markopolos' No One Would Listen: A True Financial Thriller about his attempts to get the Securities and Exchange Commission to go after Bernie Madoff. For some reason, he had huge problems getting the SEC to take him seriously.
The thing is, I can tell what the problem was from reading the man's own words: the dude was a huge douchebag. In his book, he talks about how he wanted to give his fiancee silicone breast implants for an engagement present, he tells endless annoying jokes and he makes it extremely clear that he is the smartest man in any given room. I would not hang out with this guy for anything.
At the same time, there are plenty of people who think low things about me, and I'm right sometimes. I'm not sure how I feel about the degree to which the way in which we present ourselves impacts how our message is received, or if it is received at all. Part of me wants us all to be a bit more open minded, part of me wants those of us with truths to say to figure out how to present ourselves so our words will be heard. Maybe if we reach toward each other, we will touch a bit more often.
I grant you that this isn't the most earthshaking insight, but it's what I've got today.