Why Moving in Silence Can Do More Harm Than Good

More often than enough,  we come across people online who praise the notion of 'moving in silence'. What exactly does it mean to 'move in silence'? Moving in silence is essentially staying quiet about whatever it is that you're working on (i.e. a project, job interviews, planning a product release, etc.) and then announcing to the public your success once you've achieved your goal. I, myself, used to be an advocate for moving in silence until I learned just how doing so could set back progress rather than support the progression towards achieving my goals.

Although it can sometimes be helpful to tune out the thoughts and opinions of others, moving in silence can consequently have adverse effects towards achieving your goal. Let's look at 3 reasons why moving in silence can do more harm than good.

You Block Potential Connections

It's safe to say that all of our networks could expand just a bit. No one on this planet knows every single individual under the sun. Even those who have large networks still benefit from connecting with new people. By choosing to keep your goals to yourself, you're canceling out the opportunity to connect with someone who could possibly help you achieve your goals even faster. You'd be amazed at how often people are willing to help if they're able to connect you with the right person.

You're Not Beyonce

Ever notice how Beyonce has the ability to release new music with no prior promotion or marketing efforts to get the word out to her fans? She can announce concert ticket sales at 9AM and by 9:20AM all of the floor seats are sold out. It's amazing - right? What you have to understand is that Beyonce has the support of her fans already set in place through years of growing her following to effectively take this 'surprise' approach to release new music and events with guaranteed sales success.

Have you developed a strong enough market to release a new product AND in return receive a significant conversion rate with regards to sales? For some of you, your answer may be 'yes' given where you are in your business. However, for the rest of us, launching new products and projects require the proper promotion. If you haven't done your due diligence in spreading the word prior to launch, you can't send out a tweet or Instagram post on launch day and expect to gain traction. Sure, you'd get some individuals who may stumble upon your 'Big News!' post. However, your reach could be so much better if you took the time to let others know about what's coming down the pipeline.

No Understanding of Interest

Very few leaders have been successful in developing products based on what they think people should want. Steve Jobs is a good example of someone who's had success in doing so. However, I would err on the side of taking this approach. There's a reason why concepts such as 'Market Research' exist. More often enough, I've seen people launch websites, products, events, etc. without having done any proper market research. They spend countless hours working on their secret project to create it in their own vision and then in return expects the general public to have an interest.

This creates a recipe for disaster upon finally letting people know your secret project is officially ready for others to engage - whether that be purchasing a product, visiting a new website, purchasing tickets for an event, etc. When I see people take this approach, their creation comes from a place of assumption and gut feelings. I'm often the optimist but can turn into a true realist when it comes to launching something new. There's a reason that facts and figures exist. Use them to your advantage to determine whether or not there would be an interest in whatever it is that you desire to create.

Now you may be wondering: …but what if I don't want everyone to know about my secret project?

Well, that's totally fine! There's no reason to share your plans with the world. However, I often encourage people to at least consider sharing strategically. For example, there are some projects that I personally work on that maybe 3-4 people in my life know about. It's not always the same 3-4 people. Rather, it's often people within my network that I know could help me launch my project. I rely on these individuals for feedback, a new way of thinking and in some cases collaboration.

The next time you think of a great idea for a project, take a  moment to see who in your network could bring the most value in helping turn your project into a success. Try not to focus on thinking that everyone is out to steal your idea. Share strategically and be open to connect with those who may be able to help you along the way.

CareerApril Speight