Talkers vs. Doers

Doers make things happen. Talkers get the credit.

There are always people in the background of any huge project or enterprise. They worked hard, read a lot, and experimented so things could get done. They let achievements speak for themselves, and sometimes, that works for them. More often than not, though, they don’t get enough credit for the work they did. They don’t draw attention to it, they just do it.

Talkers do the opposite. They are so good at rallying people together, at inspiring them or just getting themselves noticed that, often, they realize that’s all they need to do. People who pay attention to talkers think “why would he lie?” or “he really believes in himself,” so they believe what the talker says even though there may not be evidence of it.

The result is that doers work harder to get their stuff noticed, whereas talkers just talk more. Both sides work (kind of). But what we really need people in between.

What side are you on? Could you learn from the other?





9 responses to “Talkers vs. Doers”

  1. Azzurra Camoglio Avatar

    For a very long time I used to be a doer, because I was sure that doing was enough to get noticed and other people surely would appreciate my work. This is very often not true.
    Now I’m trying to be both, a doer and a talker. Which type are you?

  2. Joseph Doughty-Shark Avatar

    Talk is cheap, or is it. You need a talker to meet with (speak with) a clients, interact and make a sale. Verbal, and written sales are highly sought after skills. I’m more adept at written “Talk” personally.

    Doing comes with the territory.Every successful entrepreneur has developed plenty of “Doer” skills, even if it requires “Talking” to someone to get them to do it. : ))

    I do not think of it as talk or do, I look at it as a blend of skills with people having talents in both areas.

  3. Deborah Avatar

    Good question Julien. I think/hope I’m in between. And weirdly attracted to talker/doers or thinker/movers on steroids.

  4. Andrea Avatar

    I’m right there with Azzurra–I have always been driven(a doer) and that worked in school but in a corporate environment it is not the case. The talkers win more often than not. I have to be more assertive about my efforts.

  5. Josh Hughes Avatar

    I’d like to think I am a doer then a talker. The past couple of internships and now my current job all came about by talking about previous accomplishments. I am really good with people but have also held a job since I was 16. Communications skills and work ethic. I think you can have both!

    I think it is also important for talkers to recognize those they work with, especially if they contributed to the project in a way the person talking couldn’t. I would not be where I am today without help and teamwork along the way.

  6. David B. Thomas Avatar

    And then there are the people who sit quietly in the back because they don’t do anything and hope no one will notice.

  7. Andrea A Avatar
    Andrea A

    Hi Julien,
    Just trying to leave a random comment per your Twitter request! Hope it works soon!

  8. Pawel Brodzinski Avatar

    I look at it from different angle. Sometimes talkers are status quo defenders. They would talk and talk and talk but avoid doing anything or changing anything. For me this is more important issue than who gets credited.

    But then, it might be because I believe a leader of the group should care to share the praise with the team.

    So when I see talker vs doer argument I see more a guy who doesn’t want to do anything than a guy who is just looking for an occasion to get credited for someone else’s job.

  9. Dan Johnson Avatar
    Dan Johnson

    I’m a doer that’s about bottom line results, surrounded by talkers that spend alot of their time creating useless paperwork and talking about what others aren’t getting done. Thing is, other talkers in high places buy into it. Smart people (doers) see through it.

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