When I was a kid on the school playground, I sometimes heard the chant, “Cheaters never prosper!” In business, cheaters often get the upper hand for a moment, but never for long. Violations of true principles and laws always exact a price. The natural consequences can be swift and dramatic, or more subtle such as damage to personal character and reputation.
One of the great experiences of life is to associate with people of noble character; they are unwavering in good times and bad. When they become Systems Thinkers, they seek to build their business—and business systems—upon the same principles of integrity. Let me explain.
Create Honest Business Systems
Billionaire and philanthropist John Huntsman titled his book, “Winners Never Cheat.”
Low-grade, half-baked, seat-of-the-pants business systems that do not incorporate sound principles are a form of cheating—expecting to get good results without paying the price. Substandard business systems and processes are destined to falter as are the people who create and operate them.
Sadly, the government thinks it can cheat and get away with it. For example, many countries create money out of thin air by merely running their printing presses. This is done to compensate for bad policies, reckless spending, greed, and corruption. You and I (and our children) will eventually pay the price because, as they say, “there is no free lunch.”
Arian Forrest Nevin, J.D., author of “National Economy: The Way to Abundance,” said this about the U.S. financial system:
“The economy continues to decline solely because the money and economic system are not properly understood and structured. If we had the proper systems and a correct understanding of the relationship between money and physical wealth, the economy would immediately begin to improve.
“Economists like to pretend that the economy is like the weather, sometimes good and sometimes bad. There are bad spots we just have to endure. Why? There is no physical reason. Our ability to work and produce has not changed at all. The dishonest money system causes economic instability resulting in cycles of boom and bust. The simple solution to the problems caused by the dishonest money system is an honest money system” (emphasis added).
In government, we need honest people who follow sound economic policies to create systems and processes that produce consistently good financial results. We need an “honest money system!”
Good Systems Build Trust
In business, you and I need the same thing—systems built with integrity. No cheating of customers, employees, or even yourself. The Golden Rule is a standard: do unto customers and employees as you would have them do unto you. Create business systems that serve well—THAT BUILD TRUST!
Customers buy from those they trust. Employees like to work for those they trust. Business systems and processes that are steady, reliable, and produce good results are one of the best ways to build that confidence and trust. Think about it!
Doing things right is not always easy, but it is always right. Perfection may be out of reach; however, if we strive to learn true principles and apply them with integrity, we will be giving our best and earning the trust of those that matter most—a good way to go!