When the End Doesn’t Justify the Means


We have heard that saying a thousand times. We also live in a win at all costs country….If one were to describe our “culture” (I hate that word) here in the USA, it would be competitive.

But winning to me is empty when you have to either cheat, or do things that are inappropriate. Most of us ignore the bad behavior of the person or organization when profits go up or test scores improve. But how we do it is often times more important than if we do it.

Now I am no Pollyanna, however I have been drawing a line for the past 13 yrs as a formal head of HR in three very different organizations. Sometimes by doing so you put your job on the line. That’s a tough decision for all of us to make when confronted with the choice. And sometimes one cannot stay at their business when these choices cause conflict.

I can’t tell anyone where to draw the line, that’s personal. I can tell folks where I draw my line. I won’t do anything knowingly illegal, and there are some ethics areas I have where I have a line in the sand too. Of course there is always a grey area, but I am ok with that because my boundaries of non-negotiation are so clear….

I am not sure if there is a lesson in this post, but maybe there should be…


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