To me, there is nothing that defines success more clearly than feeling really good about our lives. We all want to walk right in the world. How we live, how we treat others, be it family, friends, colleagues, ex’s, or the convenience store clerk, are the real measure of our personal mettle. That’s why we hold ourselves to the highest professional standards.
In our business life, no matter what it is, we have the responsibility to act ethically in our endeavors. In each and every circumstance, the standard we should always use is the highest standard. If we wonder where is a good way to start to define our personal and business principles, Rotary International has a great starting point, the ‘4 Way Test’:
Is it the truth?
Is it legal?
Is it fair to all parties?
Is it beneficial to all parties?
I personally add a 5th Way Test question …
Is it something that supports and enhances my personal mission?
The 5th test is one of discrimination. Discrimination is important in determining our personal mission for success. Now, the way I am using it here is not how we generally think of discrimination. We are not talking about discrimination against others, like being a bigot. Not hating, being intolerant, or using favoritism. Of course not. It is about tuning into and making distinctions.
When faced with opportunities, decisions, challenges, or even heartbreak, how we use our insights and judgments, how we weigh the pros and cons, even how we react or respond, is about us using our discrimination. Whether in our personal or professional world, the need for use of our discrimination must come to the forefront of our minds immediately in order to choose meaningful success, no matter what it looks like on the outside. Sometimes that looks like a no thank you, other times it’s a resounding yes, please!
After analyses, after weighing the pros and cons, comes the next level of discrimination, that of distinguishing between I should not do this or this makes sense and feels like the right thing to do. With a definite code of ethics in place, discriminating intelligence gives us the power to decide what is good for us and what is not. It influences the way we understand and interpret our experiences, how we take actions and make decisions, how we develop beliefs and prejudices, among many other things.
Sticking to our principles in this way will delineate each of us as a person of high standards, exercising the best business practices. This will bring you more clients, more attention, more of what you are wanting, and other benefits you may not have thought of as people share information about your professional conduct with their friends and family. It will propel you further in your journey of real success. Enjoy the journey!!!