In a recent conversation, I was reminded that strong business ethics are a rare and valuable asset. I work with tons of different companies on a regular basis, from printers to manufacturers, to our office cleaning company. Over the past few years, I have been fortunate to build a strong team and surround myself with people of similar values. Still, on a regular basis, I am just shocked at the decisions some people make. In a recent conversation with a company that used our products as "inspiration" (more on that story to follow soon!!), I was informed that the owner strongly believes she did nothing wrong. The best part is that this particular company is a Christian company with a cross in their logo! This incidence came up in a recent conversation and I was reminded that business ethics are sometimes hard to come by.
Here is my advice, and I am not saying that I am perfect in any way...not even close, but this is the standard that we try to follow around here.
A few questions to ask yourself when making a tough decision:
1. Would I be proud of myself if this decision was printed on the cover of the newspaper?
This is an oldie but goodie and a great way to truly check yourself.
2. Am I using the grey area to justify a decision?
Some decisions are black and white, but many fall into that grey area. If you find yourself trying to justify a decision internally, it is likely a sign that you are not using the best judgement?
3. Are you hiding this decision from anyone inside of your company?
I find that if I try to execute something quickly, hoping that Mary or Mark don't see, this is a sign that I may be trying to convince myself that it is the right decision when it truly is not.
Often, the right decision is not always the easy decision. At RuffleButts, we pride ourselves on doing business the "right way", but sometimes it is a little painful when it costs more, takes more time, or isn't fun. This is when I have to check myself, and in the end, I have found that 110% of the time, the right thing equals the right results, even if that is difficult to see in the short-term.