The Importance Of Good Character In The Workplace: What Benjamin Franklin Can Teach Us About Cultivating Integrity
It’s no secret that in many workplaces, competencies are valued over values.
But if companies want to be successful, they need to shift their focus and put people first.
And in order to do this, we need a new framework for goodness.
Ben Franklin provides one such model for integrity – we can learn from his example of living up to our beliefs and values without compromising ourselves.
At the same time, respect is paramount – something highlighted by a US airline as an example of treating colleagues with kindness and understanding.
Finally, there are five key questions mentors should ask themselves when considering how their mentees may act: is it ethical? Respectful? Honest? Compassionate? Fair? These considerations will help build good character and form meaningful relationships within the workplace.
Overall, creating a people-first focus is not only beneficial for companies long-term financially but also emotionally as well – investing in human capital and fostering an environment rooted in goodness pays off all around.
Goodness In Values Must Be Put At The Forefront Of Corporate Culture For True Success
Goodness in competency and goodness in values are two distinct things, but both play a huge role in achieving corporate success.
When it comes to goodness in competency, there are plenty of measurable factors, such as technical skills and academic accolades.
Without these skills, you can’t succeed.
On the other hand, goodness in values is just as important – if not more so – than competency.
Goodness in values isn’t something that you can measure; it’s the moral compass that guides workplaces towards empowering cultures and creating opportunities for teamwork and innovation.
A great example of this is the WD-40 Company.
Its people-first philosophy puts its staff first above everything else.
It mentorship programs ensure that supervisors prioritize their team’s well-being and success; as a result approval ratings for superiors are typically around 96 percent!
Not surprisingly, this approach has resulted in great financial success – WD-40 has been valued at over $1.5 billion!
This shows us that when it comes to overall corporate performance, kindness and good values really do make a difference!
The Good People Mantra: A Guide To Being Good In An Imperfect World
If you want to be a truly good person, it’s not enough to just wish for it–you need to structure your actions around a shared set of principles.
That’s where the Good People Mantra comes in.
This framework is designed to help guide behavior and identify true goodness in others, and consists of five key principles.
First, there is the concept of people-first–putting human beings above ideas, profits, and other concerns.
This requires us to acknowledge our shared humanity and recognize that it is people who create inspiring ideas, not visa versa.
Second is the idea of making sure we are assisting others in becoming their best selves.
Then there is focusing on values over competencies–industry experience may look good on paper but core values tell us more about potential.
The fourth principle encourages balance and pragmatism even when navigating difficult tensions between competing priorities in the world.
Finally, everyone is encouraged to practice goodness consistently even when not observed or without apparent benefit for ourselves.
Only by living up to our values and internalizing them can genuine goodness occur.
The Good People Mantra Fuels A Pyramid Of Goodness To Enable Lasting Positive Change
The foundation of the “Goodness Pyramid” is truth.
That’s because at its base, truth serves as a crucial foundation upon which to build and grow your capacity for goodness.
Without truth, any actions or thoughts related to goodness won’t be authentic or have resonance.
Truth itself can be broken down into three main components: humility, self-awareness, and integrity.
Humility is an important part of being truthful to those around you – it helps maintain a lifelong intellectual curiosity and allows us to remain humble and down-to-earth without arrogance.
And it’s also a key trait in successful business leaders.
Self-awareness is the next part of the equation.
It requires us to look inwardly and reflect on our strengths and weaknesses – by engaging in activities like writing, meditation, psychometric tests, or seeking feedback from peers alongside an open mind, we increase our capacity for self-awareness so we can be truthful with ourselves.
Finally, integrity comes into play – it ensures that our behaviors align with our professed values so we can act with honesty and consistency no matter what we’re facing.
A great exercise for this is one popularized by Benjamin Franklin: setting up a table each week where you can track days of the week on the top row and your professed values along the left side column; tick off when you’ve lived up to them that day.
It’s a simple but effective way of ensuring integrity
The Power Of Compassion: Applying Openness, Empathy And Generosity In Business
Good People know that the center of the Goodness Pyramid is compassion; this idea comes from looking beyond oneself and recognizing the feelings and experiences of others.
But in traditional business settings, people tend to think that being compassionate is weak, while ruthlessness equals professionalism.
Natures Nutrition challenges this outdated notion by reminding us that practicing compassion can actually be the cornerstone for a productive workplace.
It helps catalyze performance and boost morale among teammates, leading to improved job satisfaction and organizational objectives.
Compassion has three key anchors: openness, empathy, and generosity.
Openness refers to having an accepting mindset when it comes to ideas from others; one useful tip here is the 24×3 rule which encourages allowing 24 seconds or minutes before responding.
Empathy involves really caring and understanding what your colleagues are going through, which can be done with well-thought out questions – such as ‘are you happy working here’? Last but no least, generosity creates mutual benefits for both sides by increasing collaboration within group tasks as seen in Adam Grant’s bestselling novel “Give and Take.”
In conclusion, understanding compassion at its core is essential for success in any workplace setting – not only does it create better relationships within teams but also strengthens overall job performance!
It Takes Wholeness, Love, Respect And Wisdom To Measure A Life Journey
If you take a look at the Goodness Pyramid, it’s not too hard to see that its crowning trait is wholeness.
This is because it encapsulates what it takes to achieve overall goodness in life.
Wholeness combines three important components: love, respect and wisdom.
Love shows up in many forms: finding meaning in work, caring for others and expressing authentic emotions.
Respect is about showing yourself and other people kindness, appreciation and understanding through humility and gratitude.
Wisdom is made of sound judgement, the ability to assess situations accurately and the capacity to differentiate between factors we can and cannot control.
All of these skills help us make better decisions, gain intelligence from experiences and perceive more complexly while avoiding pointless debates over unimportant matters.
Ultimately, when all these components are joined together they form what we call wholeness – which is sought after by the Goodness Pyramid’s top tier.
Navigating The Tension Between Long-Term Thinking And Short-Term Gains
When it comes to practicing goodness in an imperfect and contradictory world, tensions are inevitable.
Do what you can to design a shared framework for goodness within your organization but don’t be surprised when you run into conflicts when trying to implement it.
One tension you might encounter is between long-term and short-term thinking.
It’s all too easy to get caught up in the immediate payoff without considering the long-term consequences of our decisions due to a phenomenon known as Amara’s Law.
It’s important to be mindful of this tendency and practice patience when necessary, as illustrated by investor Warren Buffett who ignored criticisms during the dot-com bubble for not investing immediately and was later vindicated for doing so.
Finally, remember that tension abides even in relation to people — we must help our colleagues develop both personally and professionally if we want them to reach their potential and benefit our company with their human capital.
Using The R.I.S.E Framework To Make Good Decisions In Complex Situations
In today’s complex and fast-paced world there are often tensions between goodness and an imperfect reality.
They require thoughtful decision-making for us to make good choices that allow us to get the most out of life, both emotionally and professionally.
Fortunately, there is a four-step decision-making process we can use called the R.I.S.E framework which can help us overcome workplace tensions.
RISE stands for recognizing, internalizing, sharing and executing in that order.
Firstly, it involves evaluating a situation in terms of risk factors and potential outcomes while also having realistic expectations of these results.
A great example of this is how former Singapore Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew tackled the challenge of improving Singapore’s port infrastructure without resulting in negative consequences for local citizens when immigrants came by improving their ownership with the Central Provident Fund plan.
The next step is to internalize–or acquire deep understanding–of a situation before taking actions.
This comes into play especially when investing as was seen with the founders of MiniLuxe who spent a huge amount of time meticulously internalizing their concept before launching it to investors allowing it to become what it is today after over 10 years: hugely successful impacting hundreds of thousands people from shareholders and employees to suppliers and customers
The third step is sharing our reflections on situations with mentors, family or trusted coworkers to get varying perspectives that could result in a different angle on an issue.
Finally, following up with execution requires confidence in our decisions holding positive self awareness by noting them even writing them down along with why they were made and the logic behind them confident enough your chosen method will yield positive results creating a positive feedback loop going forward improving further decision making processes each round
How Good People Can Become Better Mentors Through Compassion And Empathy
Being a good mentor requires more than just expertise and experience.
If we truly want to inspire and motivate those we mentor, we must strive to incorporate goodness into our daily practices.
This is paramount when in positions of leadership and authority as it unlocks our true potential to become inspirational mentors.
Goodness transforms our capacity to mentor in two ways – by reminding us to shift the focus from competencies towards values and by developing a deeper level of understanding, trust and inspiration with our mentees through compassionate listening and meaningful questioning.
The key distinction between most mentor-mentee relationships is that mentoring for training tends to neglect teaching for the pursuit of goodness.
To create an authentic connection with our mentees, we must first foster a common set of values together and aim to engage on feelings instead of just tasks at hand.
To do this effectively, we must rid ourselves of “phatic communication” which are often meaningless words or phrases which don’t offer any valuable content or information (i.e.
“how are you?”).
These should be avoided as they offer no benefit whatsoever in the mentoring relationship bar the occasional icebreaker question.
Instead, ask yourself five crucial questions: What are they tryinng to achieve? What are they doing well that is helping them get there? What’s slowing them down? What will they change tomorrow? How can I help? These questions strike an important balance between discovering truth via meaningful conversation but also demonstrate a sense of compassion for their current situation (i.e.
not focussing too much on what could have been done differently).
So when striving towards the Goodness Pyramid’s values of truth, compassion and wisdom, understand how living according this mantra can help us supercharge our work environment into one full of goodness – both for us as mentor but mainly those we help realize their greatest potential!
The good people framework in this book is designed to help people add meaningful, long-lasting value to companies and their cultures.
This is done by focusing on values over competencies, encouraging better listening and empathetic reasoning skills, and practicing phatic abstinence.
These practices not only make us better employees and human beings, but also benefit the bottom line of business organizations.
In conclusion, the takeaways from this book are clear: when it comes to adding value to your workplace and beyond, values matter more than skills.
Invest time in developing your listening skills and practice phatic abstinence in order to reap the rewards of a good people mentality.