Here it happens again, the power of NOT doing the right thing. It is ultimately a failure in leadership isn’t it? A lack of ethical leadership is a road that leads to disaster.
The Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) is an association governed by Swiss law founded in 1904 and based in Zurich. It has 209 member associations and its goal, enshrined in its Statutes, is the constant improvement of football (Soccer to U.S.A. Fans).
While I was an executive at Gillette, one of the values we held dearly was of ethics. It had been one of the founding principles of the organization for over 100 years. Additional emphasis was placed on ethics with the new CEO, Jim Kilts, in 2001. He reinforced it by how he ran the company. It became one of our 3 core values.
INTEGRITY – Mutual respect and ethical behavior are the basis for our relationships with colleagues, customers and the community. Fair practice is the hallmark of the Company.
When Gillette merged with Procter and Gamble in 2005, it was no different. Over 30,000 Gillette associates received additional training on P&G’s business ethics as well as the purpose, principles and practices of the combined company. This was accomplished within the first 30 days of the merger.
Warren Buffet said it best, “In looking for people to hire, look for three qualities: integrity, intelligence, and energy. And if they don’t have the first one, the other two will kill you.” A person’s dishonesty will eventually catch up to them. It may not be today, and it may not be for many years, but you can rest assured that at some point there will always be a reckoning.
By the way, Buffett was on the board of Gillette when Jim Kilts was hired to help turn the company around.