Change always comes bearing gifts.
Your ethical muscle grows stronger every time you choose right over wrong.
Ethical dilemmas have a way of sneaking up on a person. If something smells funny, stay away from it. Or help get rid of it.
The ethics of excellence are grounded in action - what you actually do, rather than what you say you believe. Talk, as the saying goes, is cheap.
Notice that "I" is at the center of the word "ethical." There is no "they." Achieving the ethics of excellence is our individual assignment.
You can't put someone else in charge of your morals. Ethics is a personal discipline.
Excellence calls for character . . . integrity . . . fairness . . . honesty . . . a determination to do what's right. High ethical standards, across the board.
The ethics of excellence require a sense of perspective. Look at the big picture. If you live for the moment, do you mortgage the future? What happens if you put your reputation at risk . . . and lose the bet?
Live according to the ethics of excellence, and you can always stand proud. Pride - not vanity, but dignity and self-respect - should carry a lot of weight in helping you make decisions. Let pride help you decide.
But when we get enough people who don't care, and who don't accept personal responsibility for high ethical standards, our organization gets the "M" disease. Mediocrity. Anybody in the place can be a carrier. By the same token, every individual can carry the cure: the ethics of excellence.
The power of purpose is profound only if you have a desire that stirs the heart.
The only way we can develop muscle is through regular exercise. As soon as we stop stretching and working toward higher ethics, our standards start to sag. The muscle gets soft, and instead of excellence we have to settle for mediocrity. Maybe something even worse.
We need timeless principles to steer by in running our organizations and building our personal careers. We need high standards . . . the ethics of excellence.
We all faced painful ethical challenges before we even knew how to spell our names. There were tough choices. Tradeoffs. Confusing signals regarding how to live one's life. And here we are now, today, still struggling. Still trying to sort things out. Still trying to work our way through life effectively. About the only thing that has changed is the scope of the problem. There's more at stake now. And we're in a position, as grownups, to do a lot more-good or bad-for ourselves, our organization, our world. But we still must wrestle with our imperfect ethics.