I recently had the chance to address business ethics students at Wisconsin Lutheran College. This relatively small school is doing a great job of graduating well-rounded young men and women who want to make a positive difference in the world.
Dr. Don Kudek says that some students question whether business can offer a moral career path. The answer is yes!
I was happy to share stories of my mentor, Paul Fullmer, who grew a marketing services business in Chicago by caring for people, working hard and being honest. And I encouraged the students to see the good in what companies do: employing people, creating useful products and drawing out God-given talents are just a few examples that are often overlooked in today’s culture.
But what about the scandals we read about? Or the bad management we endure?
The problem isn’t business. The issue is with the same personal shortcomings that inhabit all of life. Human nature sometimes leads people to take shortcuts, bend the truth, pursue personal greed at the expense of the larger good or simply make poor choices. That’s why business leaders are wise to welcome accountability in their organizations. They should cultivate transparency. And, like WLC, they should foster a people-first culture that seeks balance in heart, mind and spirit.