The Truth

January 22nd, 2024

Some truths about lobbying

Tell the truth. 

Obvious, but so many schemes try to put a ‘gloss’ on the facts 

Attempts to ‘massage the facts; always end in disaster. 

The cardinal rule here is simple: be straightforward and transparent, especially when plans hit a roadblock.

If you have to change your plans, be open and honest, even if it means that you cannot deliver what you planned at the start.

Picture this: you had grand plans for a sparkling new school, but circumstances change, and it’s a no-go. The key here is to tell the truth as early as possible. It might sting a bit, and people might get disappointed, but explaining openly the reasons builds understanding. People respect the truth; they get that plans change.

Telling lies damages your reputation, which is a sure way to fail. 

In the Watergate scandal, President Richard Nixon’s attempt to cover up the truth led to his downfall. The damage to his reputation was done. The enduring lesson is clear: honesty is not just the best policy; it’s the only policy in the long run. Open and transparent communication was key from the start.

When I worked in the nuclear industry, it had a terrible reputation for secrecy – well deserved in any case. The problem was not that things go wrong – nuclear power is serious stuff.  When things go south, as they sometimes do, the damage isn’t from the mishap but the attempt to sweep it under the rug.

So it is better to get bad news out early – and that means as soon as you know about it. 

This applies as much to a scheme for 15 houses as a nuclear power station

In court, you tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth. 

Why not? The truth has a strange way of coming out, especially in today’s social media. Just as members of parliament are scrutinised, lobbying initiatives are subject to public scrutiny, emphasising the need for forthrightness

So stick by telling “tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth”.

Have a good week.


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