Honesty – Broken Barrier
Key Bible Verse: “Bad company corrupts good character.” – 1 Corinthians 15:33
Bonus Reading: Psalm 36:1-3
Employees who watch their boss or leader be dishonest to a supplier become uneasy about their job security.
I recently heard about a situation a person found himself in. “I was talking to our president and some other people on the executive team after some difficult negotiations with a major supplier, and I wasn’t comfortable with how it had gone. One of the vice presidents had lied to the supplier to get the price down. I don’t remember my exact words, but I put it as diplomatically as I knew how that I wasn’t comfortable with that, and that it could undermine our relationship with the supplier.
“The president rolled his eyes and laughed. ‘Look at Jack! He’s shocked, shocked, that we sometimes tell stories to suppliers!’
“Everyone laughed, and someone said, ‘Grow up, Jack.’
“Well, I turned red, but I remember thinking, If they are willing to lie to suppliers, why not employees? I never trusted the executive team after that.”
When we break an ethical barrier, it is just like breaking a pane of glass: it’s gone; it does not exist anymore. Not only do people within our organizations begin to mistrust, but also they begin setting their own moral bar lower. The “broken glass” can’t be repaired to look flawless.
—Wayde Goodall in Why Great Men Fall
My Response: How could I help raise the moral bar where I work?
Thought to Apply: He that once deceives is ever suspected.—George Herbert (English poet & priest)
Adapted from Why Great Men Fall (New Leaf, 2005)