Business Ethics and Leadership

A friend of mine has been a successful national sales manager in a major division for a multi-billion dollar international company.  Business Ethics and leadership matters big time for him.

Why the void of quality leadership in management today? 

As I know his demeanor and temperament, he clearly falls in the bucket classified as a quality manager and leader. 

We have substantial common ground on the traits that make successful leaders. 

They included the following: 

      Good leaders delegate. 

      Good leaders teach. 

      Good leaders enrich and develop.  Business Ethics is a huge deal.

      Good leaders accept equal responsibility for personnel they hire when they don’t work out quite right. 

      After all, it was their decision to  hit the green button and approve the hiring of that person.

      Good leaders consistently refer to we.  

      Good leaders have the guts and courage to point fingers at themselves rather than blame others. 

      Good leaders don’t suffocate their colleagues; they actually make it a point to stay out of their way and not micromanage.

My friend believe in personal ethics and business ethics period. 

As our conversation progressed to deeper stages, yes two men can actually be passionate and emotional about our core traits, the question of personal and business ethics surfaced with regard to quality leadership. 

He said “Mark, I haven’t talked about this with you before but you remember how miserable I was several years with my boss? 

Well, he took early retirement and now I report to a woman and have never been happier in my career. 

I look forward to going to work now.”

“Tell me more young man” I said.  “What makes her an effective leader?” I asked.  According to my friend, two things immediately happened when his new boss took over. 

Her language turned to we and us and reflected our marketing division.  Secondly, she made it very clear that our division would conduct ourselves honestly, be transparent, practice good business ethics and always strive to do the right thing. 

As a result, it is my friend’s opinion that there isn’t one thing that he cannot go to his boss about and talk about.  What a turnaround from his previous boss!  

Their marketing division is highly productive, respected, and innovative leading to people from other departments wishing to transfer.

The rare and quality leader has a dose of grace and humility.  They aren’t arrogant, greedy, and obsessed with how they look to others. 

They know that their success is directly tied to the success of people who work for them. 

As a person who once put my own selfish interests generally in front of others and paid a very serious price, let me leave you with a nugget from a section of a very large prayer that I do every day.

“I will never consider myself to be so important and indispensable again.  I am no more important than a grain of sand on a big beach, and no more important than a drop of water flowing off my finger from a cup.  I better know my place.” 

Remember that as you forge forward trying to make a name for yourself.   Make business ethics and leadership a top priority.

Then, always strive to do the right thing.


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