The 30 Fundamentals that make up the “ConnectSMART Way” describe how we want to run our business – the way we treat our clients, the way we work with each other, and even the way we relate to our vendors and suppliers. They’re who we are and they’re the foundation of our success. They drive everything we do, every day. Each week we focus on a different fundamental and discuss in depth.[/content_box]
Fundamental #1: Do the Right Thing
Demonstrate an unwavering commitment to doing the right thing in every action you take and in every decision you make, even when no one’s looking. Integrity is not a part-time job.
Jack’s behavior to the right is clearly not the right thing. Not every action is quite as clear cut. When Douglas MacArthur escaped from the Philippines in 1942 on direct orders from President Roosevelt some felt betrayed, some accused him of cowardice. He famously promised to return to the Philippines which he fulfilled and ultimately accepted the surrender of the Japanese. He then was very progressive in rebuilding the Japanese society. Had he not made the decision to follow orders that he found distasteful the outcome of WWII may well have turned out differently. Doing the right thing, the right way, with integrity often requires us to make unpopular and difficult decisions.
Ralph Waldo Emerson said “There is a time in every man’s education when he arrives at the conviction that envy is ignorance; that imitation is suicide; that he must take himself for better for worse as his portion . . . It is the harder because you will always find those who think they know what is your duty better than you know it. It is easy in the world to live after the world’s opinion; it is easy in solitude to live after our own; but the great man is he who in the midst of the crowd keeps with perfect sweetness the independence of solitude.”
Growing up I always hated hearing “I am sure you will do the right thing”. Sometimes it was because I didn’t want to be held accountable to what I knew was right, but sometimes it was someone else’s opinion of what they felt was right. It is easy to brush off some of these fundamentals with the thought that it applies to others and not to you. I was challenged this last week as to how an opinion I had formed of someone was not based on complete information. A friend offered a different viewpoint that I had never considered. We have a tendency to judge everything based on how it affects us and when it affects us adversely we usually fail to assume positive intent (#20). How we live our lives when no one knows is what truly defines our character. I believe that the entire ConnectSMART team all want to do the right thing. Peter Drucker said that “Managers do things right, Leaders do the right thing.”. Let’s commit this week to not just admonish one another to ‘do the right thing’ but to discuss what the “right thing” really is. Get the facts (#27), make the hard decisions, and Do the Right Thing! As we continue to explore the ConnectSMART way let’s all dig in deeper into each of these fundamentals and make them real each and every day.