Kevin's most recent piece was entitled Skill Shortages, Ethics, and Innovative Thinking and he makes a number of good points, but I thought the most important were those that focused on "ethics."
While we at ExecuNet are not recruiters, we certainly are up to our ears in the "staffing space" as they call it or on an even broader basis, up to our ears in the "career management" space. As a company we have been running around both arenas for 18 years come January. On a personal level, I have been running around both for more than 40 years. Over that time I have come to notice a couple of things about the world in which I find myself from both a personal and a business perspective:
- There is much that comes under the heading of "subjective." Ethics are subjective. As we know all too well from our Peanuts reading days, "Happiness is different things to different people." It can become horribly hair-splitting. Translation: A lawyer’s paradise.
- While I can respect everyone's right to define things that are subjective for themselves, the fact of the matter is that if it is subjective, we not only have the right to define it for ourselves, but we have no alternative unless we want to sit back and let someone else dictate the "values" we bring to our lives and hence to our livelihoods.
- Both the people and the businesses that I feel have been the most successful and most respected are those that haven't seem to need anyone to define ethics or values. They came with them, built in, because of what they were brought up to believe was "right" and "fair." And they didn't need much more to guide them other than that line that goes something like "Do unto others...."
- It has also been my observation that if and when you run into people or businesses whose mantra is more Gordon Geko-like, I walk away and smile to myself thinking of another line I recall hearing somewhere: "Time wounds all heels."