Alas, the actual segment wasn't as juicy as I'd hoped--the guest's verboten topics were the things you could probably guess if you've ever been to a cocktail party: Don't talk about your golf game (no one cares, even other golfers), wine (unless you're sure the other person is a oenophile), what route you took to the party (ZZZZ), kids (no one cares, even other parents), dreams (unless you want to be flagged as a flake), and stocks (you're probably either bragging or whining). The signal faded out before the final one, but I'm guessing it was religion, politics or sex.
But it did strike me that there's an analogy for freelancers headed into a meeting with a prospective client, when the inevitable lull in conversation comes around but the sale hasn't closed. The nervousness and excitement can cause us to blurt, blab or otherwise inject nonsense in ways that can be every bit as deadly as the items above:
- Talking about how slow business has been (smells like eau de desperation)
- Talking about being super busy (it's a fine line between being highly sought and overwhelmed)
- Recounting a tale of bad or unruly clients (risky, though you might be able to get away with something that's funny and has a happy ending)
- Penalty fees/rules/restrictions (e.g., number of rounds of revisions)
- Talking too much, period (even if it's positive and upbeat stuff)