How do you add value? How do you make a difference? How do you stand out? How are you best remembered? Think about the best dinner conversations you have ever had or participated in; recall the most interesting discussion joined in with friends – what comes to mind?

Do you remember what stuck with you as an exciting thought; a fascinating subject; a remarkable concept?

Do you remember what grabbed your attention?

On the flip side can you remember the same basic set of circumstances but with the following twist – the conversation was so boring you couldn’t wait to run….

Here is a bet – the stuff that grabbed you was formed by opinion. Interesting, well thought out, connected to something important to you opinion.

Opinions can be powerful – opinions can be dangerous – opinions can be stupid – but when they are meaningful they are hard to forget and sticky like glue.

So here is a thought:

Any clod can have the facts, but having opinions is an art.
– Charles McCabe

Facts are important and form the foundation of every great opinion I have ever heard – but facts alone are a commodity; boring –

Look at the CIA and its counterparts around the world – all get the facts (or most do…) the question is who has the best analysts – who can form the strongest opinion from them.

Anyone can read back the facts – for example – how many offices, in how many countries, with how many people, doing how many things – the question is what can you do with that information?

The anti-commodity antidote is taking the facts and making them sing…

Your opinion…???

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