The Eagle Blog

Does the End Justify the Means?

This has been a slow blog week … a couple of days of management meetings will sometimes do that! Not only are they intense days requiring full energy and long hours, they tend to (a) mean I am not doing my day job which requires catch up and (b) they generate MORE task for me to do. A DOUBLE whammy!

So … up to my ears in tasks I thought I should “pontificate” on a common issue that might just get some interest!

We are often faced with choices, whether personal choices or business choices … they can be big choices or small choices but ultimately they help to define who we are.

They can be questions of ethics … or just a question of choice.

If my goal is to “save the world” what is an acceptable “cost” for that?

If I want to defeat terrorists is it OK to do whatever is necessary in order to meet that goal?
What would have been an acceptable price to save the twin towers from being hit? Before the fact we had no idea of the devastation that would have been caused … so would it have been OK to shoot all those planes out of the sky (if we had the chance)?

If my goal is to provide shareholder value what tactics are considered to be unreasonable?

Is it OK to maybe bribe some third world official to get a contract?

If my goal is to protect my family from crime to what lengths should I go?

Is it OK to have a car protection system that shoots out flames at any prospective attacker?

These of course are all extreme cases and beyond the reasonable experience of anyone reading this blog. But that begs the question about where the line of acceptability is.

The real question becomes … how far are you willing to “bend” the rules to achieve your end? Or perhaps how far will you compromise your values in order to win?

If you are a soccer player are you willing to “dive” in order to get the penalty that could win the game for your team?

If you are the salesperson are you willing to shortcut your company processes to get the deal? Maybe you cross off some language from your company’s contract, or agree to a price that is outside of acceptable guidelines … or maybe you deliver a product that you know will not meet the needs of the client.

Think about it!

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