Character Matters

Always, but especially, in tough times, character matters. Life's journey is not so much about what is accomplished but how. My view is that all company presidents, owners, heck everyone, looking in a mirror in the morning has to love the reflection he or she sees.

I am astounded by the Madoffs, Helmsleys or Stanfords of the world. They have had financial wealth but no character. Just because we can is no excuse to do. A close friend (Jack) and I talked today about our top sales  executives in totally different companies shipping container loads of products at fiscal year end so they could make bonus for themselves and their teams. Unfortunately, they shipped against  non-existent purchase orders. Bonuses paid, shipments returned, companies in a hole.

Congress, by the way, is not different. Congress passes unfunded mandates, and push costs downstream. Downstream are companies, states or municipalities. Congress is clean, all the others pay. If they can't pay, well, welcome to hell.

Entrepreneurs and leaders have to stand clear of this behavior and not tolerate duplicity. This is tough when your money, your family, your life is on the line. My view is that if you, owner, leader and visionary, do not set the example, true North, no one else can or will.

One of our clients, Peter Ladka of Parse3 exemplifies this idea of standing true. He is the last to win and the first to lose. He never forgets it is his family and the people in his company that create his wealth. It is not how many 0000000000 are in front of the decimal point in his checking account that measures his wealth. It is his character.

Lead. Lead from strength of principle that you believe in.

My wife and I had tough times in our family company, but never forgot the idea that we get there together or not at all. My mission. My men. (PC is people but readers will get the idea.) At the end of the day, character matters.



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