I was once in business with a man who had a habit of saying, “It’s business,” as a way of justifying his actions. It’s as if he had a different set of values for his business and personal life. As far as he was concerned, it was okay to do things one would never consider in their personal life, as long as it was in the name of “business.” Needless to say, our partnership didn’t continue past that point.
If you want to be happier and more productive in your life, be authentic. Don’t do something in your business that would not be acceptable in your personal life. Do not treat people differently at work than you do at home.
This should be obvious but, looking at the way some people act in the world of commerce, it’s clear it’s not.
We have corporate executives ordering their subordinates to do things that are unethical and, at times, even illegal. All in the name of “business.”
We’ve seen companies “cook the books” to portray a better image to the investment community, as though it’s acceptable to lie and cheat as long as it’s in the best interest of the company.
Pharmceutical companies, fined for making false claims about their products, write it off as part of the cost of doing business.
This type of behavior is wrong. A second grader can tell you that.
And it violates not only man’s laws but God’s laws and the laws of the Universe. Eventually, this type of behavior will result in failure. The law of Cause and Effect ensures it. Who remembers Enron?
This is not acceptable. It never was and it never will be. The end result of this type of behavior can only be eventual failure, as evidence by the number of companies in ruin and former executives in jail.
What can you do to avoid getting caught up in this?
For starters, make sure the company you own, work for, or want to work for is an upstanding, ethical organization. If not you may want to go elsewhere. If you find yourself in a situation where you’re being asked to do something that compromises your integrity and goes against your values, don’t do it.
Your own integrity is all you really have to guide you. Compromise that and you’ll regret it sooner or later. You may not go to jail; you may not even be found out, but the guilt you will carry around as a result of selling out will weigh you down for a very long time.
Instead, make sure you are clear about your values and know what drives your behavior. Once you know what you stand for and what is important to you, you’re better able to determine which actions are appropriate and which are not.
You are a unified being whether at home with your family or in a negotiation for a “big deal”
Treat everyone you meet with the same caring and honesty you would demonstrate if you were dealing with a family member and you’ll see your success soar.
How do you stay true to yourself? We’d love to hear from you. Please post your comments.