Monday, September 5, 2011

Respect - good for the soul

R-E-S-P-E-C-T tell you what it means to me.
This is the final part of my four part discussion of E3 systems corporate values.  This week, I want to discuss respect and how it applies to the business.

When talking about respect, it is easy for an author to rely of clich├ęs about the subject.  Countless leadership books have covered the topic.  Sports radio has countless hours of conversation devoted to players and coaches who have earned it.  Finally, it is one of those intangible things which a business can create but cannot measure.  In short, a business lives and dies based on the respect it has in the marketplace.

To me, respect is about as simple as the Christian Golden Rule or Kant’s Categorical Imperative.  If you treat people like you want to be treated respect is just a natural byproduct.  I am terrible with names but I try to make a point of calling people by their given name rather than their nick name.  This simple gesture values them as people rather than as the moniker others have placed on them. 

When I used to work at a casino we were trained to thank our staff for a good days work and say goodnight.  That little acknowledgement meant the world to me as a line employee.  As a pit boss, I practiced it religiously.  It is a habit I still have.  Again, it seems like the respectful thing to do for employees and peers. 

When I look at people like Al Dunlap, Carly Fiorina, John Bolton, and Martha Stuart; I see people who have found success but forgot how to respect others.  I will strive to remember that everyone who works with me have a family, friends, and a soul.  Nothing crushes a person’s soul more than working with ignorant, arrogant, and disrespectful people.  It is my hope that I can create an environment of respect at my workplace. 

Finally, I see respect as how you treat your community.  A business only exists because people in your community are willing to work for you and purchase your product.  This means using locally sourced vendors, keeping outsourcing to a minimum, and paying a fair share of taxes.  It isn’t very glamorous but if you do simple things like this in the community people will notice and be more predisposed to buying your product. 

So that is what my firm is going to stand for: agility, growth, development and respect.  I am ready to start selling and I hope that we have more adventures to report as the weeks move on.