I had the good fortune to attend the Get Motivated Seminar, presented by Peter Lowe, and featuring a great roster of speakers. I noticed that most of the speakers, whether talking about leadership, perseverance, or achievement, all spoke about the importance of doing the right thing and having the reputation of doing the right thing. Always doing the right thing leads to trust, and trust leads to leadership.
There are many people out there that think they’re doing the right thing, particularly when it comes to their employees, but you may be surprised how your employees feel about that. One of the speakers, former Microsoft chief Rick Beluzzo told the story of his first management position. He thought he was doing all the right things, but by the end of the month all eight employees he managed revolted, going to his boss to say they couldn’t work for Rick any more. This got me to thinking about a boss I once had. My wife and I were always trying to figure out what he’d do next. Hi behavior seemed to be very unpredictable. One day at dinner, I was telling my wife the latest story and she pointed out that my boss’s behavior was very predictable; he always did what was in his own best interest. Once I realized that, his behavior was very easy to guess.
So what does doing the right thing mean? Doing the right thing means different things to different people, but most people agree on the following:
• Recognizing when someone has done a job well
• Caring about people inside and outside the organization
• Creating an environment where people feel free to share their ideas
• Being open to feedback and willing to accept it
• Working with honesty and integrity
Doing the right thing doesn’t cost any more that doing business the way you always have. But people recognize when you are trying to treat people well and respond positively to it. So, before you do what you’ve always done, think about how you can benefit others by your actions. Think how much the world would change if each of did that every day.