The sloth and the greed

With all that’s happened over the last 18 months or so in the financial sector and the economy it’s been made quite plain that an unhealthy desire for more is ultimately what has led us to the place we currently find ourselves.

We can sit and point the finger and lay blame fairly and squarely at the front doors of the banking industry in one sense, although none of us are immune from similar type behaviour. Yes, even dare I say it in the third sector!

‘Surely not’, you say, ‘the third sector can’t be tarred with the same brush as the commercial and banking sectors can it?’

Yet, traits and behaviours such as power-play, politics, positioning, bargaining, manipulating, deal-making, empire building and the list goes on and on… are not found in commercial sectors alone.

They might be carried out in many cases with a little more tact and diplomacy and a smattering of political correctness, but they do happen.

Ok maybe it won’t bring down the world’s financial economy (although you could argue this), but how does this type of behaviour affect the social economy? What might be the long term effect of all that stuff?

I am sure all of us have experienced that the desire to succeed in any walk of life can often lead to an overstepping of the line which we might call integrity.

Of course, I like most, and without hesitation, will be right at the front of the queue in casting blame on banks for our current crisis. 

Perhaps it is a fair criticism to make. But, in operating an ethical business myself, I must also take a look at the fingers pointing back at me and ask: ‘What about my ethics, my behaviour, my thinking, will it show itself to be detrimental in the weeks and months to come for the economy in which I operate?’

And then ask: ‘How can I adopt the phrase – change starts with me! – and do something today to bring about the opposite response in the world around me?

‘How can I build up my team without thought of what it might bring to me?’

‘How can I develop my partnership working in order to move towards a more radical definition of partnering which goes beyond securing mere mutual advantage?’

We all want someone or something to blame, but the bottom line for me personally (at least in intent) is what difference am I making?

Am I content to hide under a corporate mission statement which sounds altruistic and yes, in realty, delivers public benefit, or am I willing to be the difference and to model the mission statement in my every thought, word and action?


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