The supreme quality for leadership is unquestionably integrity. Without it, no real success is possible, no matter whether it is on a section gang, a football field, in an army, or in an office. – Dwight D. Eisenhower
“I cannot and will not cut my conscience to fit this year’s fashions.” ― Lillian Hellman
“Whoever is careless with the truth in small matters cannot be trusted with important matters” ― Albert Einstein
On our thoughts today is the importance, no, correction – the critical nature of being honest and ethical. I am certain i have written other posts about ethical behavior, and the ripple affect of one indiscretion on the world. We saw Enron emplode, we watched the empire of Martha Stewart shudder at her sentence and jail time (only to rally back with vigor upon her release), and i think we can keep on going with the list of those who have fallen from the shining place of honor and integrity to one of tarnish and scandal. Yes, these things continue to go on, but that is not what is on our mind today.
What is laying on my heart is a little bit closer to home today. It is the ethical choices small businesses make. We spent a lot of time researching and doing our homework to become the best at what we do. Steve is always reading, learning, growing in his soap making skills. One of the blessings of what we do is the ability to become a member of the Handcrafted Soapmakers Guild. There is an annual dues, which entitles you to continue to display the seal of the guild on your products, and to list your products on their website. The guild offers testing and certification at various levels of skill, and as you test out for master soapmaker you are permitted to display that seal on your products…. but there is a process, an earning of those priveleges. We are proudly able to display the seal that we are members of the guild, and as you look at their website you will find our business listed there too.
Recently we came across another soap maker who used the guild seal on their products. We went to look them up just to see what all they offer…. and hmmm, they are not on the list as soapmakers guild members. Quite interesting. Small things like this lead me to wonder what else are they stretching truth on. I am certain they were members of the guild at one point, but they have not continued. It seems apparent that they should take the seal off their products if they are not active members.
So we returned to the idea of always representing ourselves with integrity and truth. ALWAYS! NEver let your guard down on what you believe, or compromise the standards of your life or business. We believe so strongly in this that it is part of our business plan. We have determined to always remain truthful. Why? Because our integrity and our business practice are a part of our brand, just as our products are. We value that quality in others, and we want to always remain true to high ethics. And it is true what Albert Einstein said – “Whoever is careless with the truth in small matters cannot be trusted with important matters.”
Want to find out who is a member of the Handcrafted Soapmakers Guild of America? Simply Click on the guild logo below to be taken to the database search engine.