Most people have someone in their life – or someone who has passed on – who was always proud of them and who they always wanted to please. For me, this was my mom. For others it was their dad, a grandparent, a favourite aunt, uncle, friend, or their god.
It is great to have someone like this in your life, because they help you choose to do the right thing. When in doubt, you can ask yourself “what would my mom want me to do?” or “if this comes out, would I want to have to tell my mom?”. In the past, such thinking has kept me from doing some of the stupid things I have considered doing. (Unfortunately, not all of them!)
Having the proverbial “momma” watching over us helps us to do the right things and avoid bad decisions.
- Would momma approve of me bullying a co-worker to get my way? No!
- Would momma approve of me being unfair or unkind to anyone? No!
- Would momma be proud if she saw me pick up some garbage on the street or chase down a kid with the teddy bear that fell out of their bag? Hell yes!
- Would momma be happy if I discriminated against someone for any reason? No way!
- Would momma be proud of me if I spoke up about something in my workplace I thought could be improved instead of griping about it? Yup!
- Would momma approve of me taking advantage of someone in any way? No!
You get the picture. Each day we must make decisions in response to what life throws at us. Having a strong moral compass to help guide you through these decisions makes life so much easier. In my case, thinking of my mom helps me to do the right thing. Working at a company that supports you in this helps make life worth living.
At IBEX, we demand that each member of the team do what is right for people and for the world before what is right for the company. Often these things align, like when we decided to purchase new dishes and a dishwasher rather than use disposable plates for company events. This is good for the planet and it saves money. If doing what’s right for other people or the world ever conflicts with what is right for the company, we expect that every member of the team will do what they think is right, in effect, to “Act like their momma is watching”. This is one of our core values.
Other companies may express similar values as something involving honesty and integrity. We like a bit of humour in anything we do, so we have tweaked the wording a bit. However you say it, though, organizations that value doing the right thing for society, for the planet, and for their colleagues as much as (or even more than!) doing things that are good for the business are companies that we should all seek to emulate.
For companies with strong values like ours, you can’t fake this stuff, so we have a permanent competitive advantage over companies that value ethics and honesty less than we do. Where does your organization stand?