When I was in grade-school, we were brought into class one day and sat behind our desks and taught about pen-pals — a word all but extinct in the English language because of modern technology.  The concept then was the same as today. While we used paper and a pen then, today we use a website and a keyboard.  In a recent past, wars were won or started with the stroke of a pen. Websites and email has become as much of a staple in modern society as pen and parchment was in 1776. Like in our history, today wars are won or started by the stroke of a key (no pen and parchment required).

Having a website is a way to express yourself and your feelings and can become as much of a tool in your expression as talking.  In fact, it may be more effective or efficient to broadcast your thoughts on a website so you only ever have to say it once.

But websites have a much broader purpose.  As it was realized in 1996, a few ads, a few “checkout” buttons and one becomes a regular internet tycoon.  We’re not saying that adding these items to a website will make you rich, but consider that all those we think of as “wealthy” have websites.

So if you’re ever thinking if you should have a website, consider that all of our founding fathers had published journals (a pen-and-paper blog) and your success could hinge as much on what you write, as what you don’t write.  What what I mean by that: just because you have the right to publish it, doesn’t mean you should.

Success means taking responsibility for your writings as well.  While it is vital to have a website, exercising caution in what you write or post is as important as having that site.  Consider what happened to a very internet-popular CFO that decided he would make a statement one day and go down to the local Chick-Fil-A because he didn’t agree with their beliefs.

He video records his interactions with a calm, gentile, and innocent employee while he abusively and abrasively chastises her for working with the company calling her inhumane, hateful, bigoted, and a few other choice words.  The next day, this CFO was fired and has been struggling to find work ever since.

In our connected world, your words can be as helpful to your cause and success as they can be devastating.

So do you really need a website? I ask, “Do you need a pen and paper?”.  Because that is what a website is becoming, and like what you put in writing with pen and paper, the same caution must exist online.