Do actions really speak louder than words? If so, then how?

chrisyhsun | Student
I would that yes, actions speak louder than words. I think people underestimate (at times) the effect that they have with what they do as opposed to what they say. Let me briefly go into an example:

You need to pick a group for a class project, and one of your classmates asked to be in your group. You’ve worked with him several times in the past and know that he doesn’t really focus well at group meetings and that he likes to put things off until right before the deadline. Both characteristics go against your own work style and you explain this to him, saying that it’s probably best that you aren’t in the same group. He tells you that he can change how he works. More importantly, he tells you the same things that he has told you in the past when you tried rejecting him from your group.

In this example, it is clear how actions speak louder than words. The classmate has a pattern of acting a certain way, and even if he says otherwise, you would logically assume that he will just continue to act the same way. Therefore, his actions have more of an impact on your decision than his words do.
Another example of this is nonverbal communication. Say you are trying to convince a client that your product is the best one out there, but you speak softly and hesitate a lot, especially when answering your client’s questions about what makes your product better. You look down at your shoes instead of at the client and never seem to meet your client’s eyes. Your actions make you seem unconfident and almost deceitful, and it is very likely that you will not get that client’s business because your actions said more about the product than your words did.