550 words summary writing- NO CHATGPT or any other online source-48 hours
I have attached the instruction paper and the story for paraphrasing summary. I need someone to follow the complete instructions as outlined
550 words summary writing- NO CHATGPT or any other online source-48 hours I have attached the instruction paper and the story for paraphrasing summary. I need someone to follow the complete instructi
1 Summary Assignment Rakesh Mittoo 1 THE UNIVERSITY OF MANITOBA Inter -Departmental Correspondence DAT E: September 6 , 20 23 TO: All Communication Students in GMGT 2010 , Section s A 01 -A04 FROM: Rakesh Mittoo, Instructor SUBJECT: Summary Assignment For this assignment, you will need to write a summary of the chapter “True Lies” from Jeffrey Seglin’s book, The Good, the Bad, and Your Business: Choosing Right When Ethical Dilemmas Pull You Apart . Your summary should be approximately 550 words long. A summary is a brief restatement, in your own words , of th e conte nt o f a sou rce — a passage, an article, a chapter, or a book. This restatement should focus on the central idea of the source, and, therefore, a summary can be only one or two sentences long. A longer, mo re complete, summary, which is the kind yo u wi ll be craft ing, wi ll state the cen tral idea of the source and include the main ideas that support or explain the central idea. It may even refer to some important illustrative examples. A summary is hiera rch ical in structure, fo r it begins with t he most impo rtant central idea, followed by the supporting ideas and examples. A good summary will even reflect the order in which the ideas are presented in the source. In this summary, condense the idea s in thi s c hapter as completely as possible and mi rror it s org anizat ion as well. To read this chapter (or any article) and produce the draft of your summary, use the following strategies: Reading • Write in the margins as you read the article. Jot dow n brief not es that identify cont ent and summarize or expl ain i deas. • Don’ t highlight uni mportant details, examples, or redundancies. • Locate and underline the thesis or central idea of the article. If you can’t locate an obvious thesis statement, writ e one th at states the central id ea. • Then, iden tify th e maj or top ic divi sions/sections of the article. Subject headings may be useful guides to this organization. Highlight all of the supporting ideas in each section. 2 Summary Assignment Rakesh Mittoo 2 Writing the Draft – Begin yo ur summa ry by referring to the a uthor and the titl e, and by wr iting down th e thesis/centra l idea in your own words. – Following this information, give a brief summary of each major section of the article, condensing the supporting ideas. – Select a few si gnifican t, illustrative examples or specifics that su ppor t the main ideas. – Write the summ ary, imitating the organi zational pattern of the article/chapter. Editing Strategies – Use vivid and exact language to make your summary clear and interesting. Ref er to th e thesaurus, if necessar y. – Use effectiv e trans ition al exp ression s between state ments within a paragraph and between paragraphs. – Use present tense in referring to the author and the article. For instance, the “author states” instead of the “a uthor s tate d”; the “article cont ains” instead of t he “art icle contai ned.” – In your first reference to the author, use both names; for subsequent references, use only the last name. – Make sure you retain the same tone and emphasis as the writer maintain s. – Do n’t include your opinion s on the issues. – Don’t incl ude di rect qu otations from t he article. Present the information in your own words. – Combine sentences wherever possible and appropriate. – Eliminate wordiness, redundant expressions, or unne cessary det ails. – Rewrite and edit until this ve rsion m eets the re quired length. DUE: See the Course Outline 3 Summary Assignment Rakesh Mittoo 3 A paraphrase: Replaces the language of the original with your own Renders the idea as clearly and accurately as possible Helps clarify abstr act or c omp lex material How to do a paraphrase • Unde rsta nd th e sour ce pass age (s) . • Substit ute with your own words. • Change the structures of sentences. • Rearrange your sentences so that they read smoothly. • Do not imitate style or plagiarize. (Do not copy th e langua ge of the source) • Ackno wledge the source. Do not use quotes in a p araphrase or a summary Paraphrase Techniques 1. Change a sentence or part of it from one grammatical form to another: • Certainly , life exists on other planets. It is certain that life exists on ot her planets. • Weather conditions being fav oura ble , we sha ll fly. If the weathe r conditions are favourable, we shall fly. • The girl with dark hair is my sister. The dark haired girl is my sister. 2. Use synonyms when you are paraphrasing: • A biting wind cau sed them to shiver. (pie rcing, chilling, n ipp ing) Ex ample for Prac tice : It was a beautiful day, and I didn’t want to be inside. Paraphrase Summary Recasts the message into your language Same Has roughly the same length Is a short or compressed version — 1/5th of the original or source. An abstra ct is e ven sho rter . See the Summary Assignment for required length) Objectiv e: 1. Accurate restatement . 2. No opinion Same Doesn’t copy the language of the source. Same Reflects the order in which the ideas a re presented Same Does not use quotes Sam e Main tains th e t one and emphasis Same Links ideas Same Does n ot follow h ierarchical structure Is hie rarchical: central idea , supporting ideas , and some specifics 4 Summary Assignment Rakesh Mittoo 4 A. SELECTION Underline the most important info rma tion : thesis/central idea. Look for key wo rds to ident ify main i deas. B. DELETION • Digressions • Repetitions • Nonessent ial background • Extended exa mples unless very central FOCUS ON THE IMPORT OF THE EXAMPLE • Interest -provoking anecdotes • Minor details C. NO TE TAKING • Main/key ideas for each section • Follow the logi c o f ideas and connections between them. FOCUS ON L ARGE SECTIO NS D. MINIATURIZING Notice t he shape, flow, and overall impression of the whole. COMBINE SECTION SUMMARIES Here is a paragraph for summar y from Rosenblatt’s arti cle in Time magazi ne: An yone wh o cl aims it is impossible to get rid of the random violence of today’s mean streets may be telling the truth, but is also missing the point. Street crime may be normal in the U.S., but it is not inevi tab le at such levels, an d the fact is that there are spe cifi c reaso ns for the nation’s incapacity to keep i ts crime do wn. Almost all these reasons can be traced to the American criminal justice system. It is not that there are no mechanisms in place to dea l w ith American crime, m erely that the exi sting o nes are imp ractica l, inefficient, anachronistic, uncoopera tive, and o ften lead to as much civic destruct ion as they are meant to curtail. 1. Identify the central idea. 2. Identify the main (supporting) idea. 3. Writ e o ne sentence for each. 4. Be selective in w ord cho ice, ye t co nvey th e complete thought. 5 Summary Assignment Rakesh Mittoo 5 Introductory parag raph of you r summary should include: 1. The central idea — one or two sentences 2. Attribution: information about the source (author’s name, title of the article or the chap ter, the title of the boo k, jour nal, or mag azine) 3. Overview statement about the article or the chapter in a sentence. A Student’s Example of Introductory Paragraph: In the chapter “Knowing Yourself” taken from his book On Beco min g a Leader , Warren Be nnis states that p eop le b ecome l eade rs only once they understand themselves and dec ide on thei r own what kind of a person they would become. Bennis discusses four lessons of leadership. After writing the introductory paragraph, wri te other paragraphs whic h summarize the en tire article o r ch apter. Also add a very brief concluding paragr aph which s ummarizes the conclusion tha t the article states. 6 Summary Assignment Rakesh Mittoo 6 Overall Comments on Students’ Summaries and a Checklist • Incorporate correct name of th e a uthor, title of th e c hapter/article, an d the b ook in your introd uctory paragraph. Make sure this para al so contains the paraphrased central ide a and the overview statement. • The i ntroductory paragraph should be two to three sentences long. • Body paragrap hs should be at least fo ur to six sentence s long. • Mainta in p aragrap h structure — unity, coherence, and develo pment — in yo ur summary . Especially, try to link ideas together so that your paragraphs are connected . • Use effective transitional expressions, such as how ever, therefore, as a result, according to etc ., that hel p to re late ideas. Also, try to combine sentenc es where ne eded. • Do not summarize parag raph by paragraph . For example, you may choose to condense some paragraphs into only one paragraph for your su mma ry. • Focus on summariz ing major ideas fr om the origina l or source . As well, c apture the logic or developm ent of key or main (supporting) ideas . Choose a few specifics which illustrate the idea. • Reflect the structure of the source article /chapter in your su mmary. • Establish appr opriate distance a nd cont ext for the materi al you’re summarizing. Do not comment on the articl e by praising or criticizing the writer. Do not add your opinion to the writer’s ideas in the body of your summary or in the last paragrap h. • Maintain the same ton e and emphasis as the aut hor’s . • Be a lert to sentence errors: fragments, comma splic es, or run -on (fused) sentences. • Use th esaurus and dictionary to ensure eff ective and correct use of words to communicate the ideas in the source. • Form at according to APA guidelines for acad emi c wr iti ng : 1 -inch marg ins (top, bottom, left, and right), ragged -righ t margin (not justified marg ins) , doub le spacing, indentation for a new paragraph, and so on. • Avoid pronoun shifts and the use of “you” pr ono un. • Avoid wordiness as w ell as short, chop py sent enc es. • Do n ot cons truct one -sentence paragraphs for su mmary assig nment or other papers. If yo u have such a paragraph, attach it to the paragraph where it should belong. • Do not use lists or bullet points for the writer’s ideas or po ints. • Do not u se h ead ings or subhead ings ev en if the writer uses them . • Do not use direct q uotes for ideas from the art icle. Present information in your own words. • Do not omit relevant details that would change the original autho r’s point of view. • Avoid fon t size larger or s hor ter tha n 12 -poi nt font size . • Proofread your summary. Check to see tha t the message will be just a s clear to the reader as it is to you. Check for errors in spelling or typos. • Do not restate the ideas of the art icle or the chapter in th e last paragra ph o f y ou s umm ary. The conclu ding paragraph should not be longer than two li nes.
550 words summary writing- NO CHATGPT or any other online source-48 hours I have attached the instruction paper and the story for paraphrasing summary. I need someone to follow the complete instructi
the good, the bad, and your business choosing right when ethical dilenunas pull you apart Jeffrey L. Seglin Foreword by Norman· R. Augustine ~ JOHN WILEY & SONS, INC. New York • Chichester • Welnheim • Brisbane • Singapore • Toronto 8 e True Lies L ying has consequences. That’s an observation I made in an article once on how the actions ofIeaders can have a dramatic effect on how their fol lowers will behave. But the consequences of lying go far deeper than just the worry that people will emulate you. Our whole economic system works in large part because it’s built on trust among the individuals involved. That trust-that I will do what you pay me to do and I will pay you for the services you do for me or the products you sell me-is fundamental to smooth dealings in the economy. This chapter looks at some of the consequences of lying as well as how people draw the line between lying and postur ing for business advantage. When there is a hint of fraud or untrustworthiness, a business runs the risk oflosing customers who will cross the street to take their busi ness elsewhere. When amazon.com, the behemoth purveyor of online 130 THE COMMON C:OOD books u.25 acc::~?:! of riinning ai?verrise!:~ellts d!sg::ised as edltnriaij about titles 01: its sire, it responded by n~akirl~ thc distinction clearc:. When it introduced its own online auction services to conlpetr with the wildly successtul eBay.com online auction, amazun.com capitalized on the news that the credibility ofsoine of the merchandise that had been sold on eBap was being questioned by intralucing a guarantee of up to $250 ifbuyers of goods on arnazon.com’s auctions were victinfi of fraud. Sure, it was good advertising for amazon.com to take such ar, ac- tion. And certainly, it did prey on the unfortunate claims against one of its rna~or online auction competitors. But it’s a clear example that companies understand the importance ef creating an inxge and a ins- 1 sage chat consurtlers can trust. When I sat with her on a panel to discuss business ethics, Susan Spagnola, an atcornry with Chase, summed up the consequences of lying nicely she remembered a piece of wisdorn her mother handed down to her: “Tellirlg the truth takes a second; teliing a lie takes a l:fctime to ando.”‘ Th~t sir:lp!= piece of ivisdom is echoed by Slssela Bok early in her book, Lyilg: Morai Choice in Pub!ir aud Private Lifi., when she ob- serves chat “trust in some degree ofveracity functions as ajourtdation of relatio~ls among human beings; whezl this trust shatters or wears away, inst~tutlons ~oila~se.”~ That need to trust in the veracity ofothers goes decp. But so. too. does the recog:li:ion that ir’s not somett..ing ~!ut n:c:ssar:ll; corn:: ez- ily. To get Biblical on you for a rnornent, consider the observations of theologian ,Max Stackhouse as he was trylng to make clear that the 10 commandments ofthe Bible are just as relevant today as they were whe~l they were written thousands ofyears ago. When it came time to talk about the ninth commandment, “You shall not bear false witness,” Stackhousc reflrccrd: Ly~ng. chratlng, twlsrlng ~nforrnat~on and ev~dence, creatlng f~lse ‘ ‘”? irnpress~ons. maklng what IS bad look gvd, keeping sAl,.,. truth needs a volce, 2nd failirlg to be hrect are aniorlg the ways that we attempt to gain advarltage or smootl~ human relations for our benefit. Though bargaining, sharp dealing, advertising, public re- lations, packaging, and selling ‘as is’ have been a part of economic life since the first horse trade. misrepresentation, deception, and obscurity by legalese infect open interaction and destroy the trust necessary for commerce. They lead to litigation in all thing and even to the corruption ofjudicial systems. Ve are to cell the truth in all things, so fir as we can know it.’ In the column I wrote in The New York Times about lying having consequences. I went on to say that those consequences were “&re onesqW4 At the time, President BiU Clinton was in the midst of his im- peachment hearings and Bill Gates was taking the stand in the an- titrust trial in which ficrosoft was embroiled. In an unfortunate turn of events, both Bills were caught giving sworn testimony that was less than truthful. President Clinton had just decided to bomb Iraq and some people were suggesting his actions were meant to deflect atten- tion from his impeachment problem. Clinton’s credibility had been shattered and, as a result, he was finding his moves and motives on dl issues called into question. At the same time all this was occurring, Bill Gates was appearing to dance around the truth under oath in the Microsoft antitrust trial and his credbility was also being called into question. But just at the time that both Bills were caught up with truth troubles, they continued to be wildly popular. Both were among the top 10 most-admired men in America accorhng to a Gallup poll that measures such thmgs. It also came at a time wherl Who’s Who Among American High School Students reported that 80 percent of high school students had admitted to cheating on school work accordng to 1 52 THE COMMON GOOD its recent survey (95 percent said they were never caught).’ In the light of such reports, it would seem that a little looseness with the truth shouldn’t matter. But when you hear that at the same time businesses were reporting that they were losing somewhere between $40 billion and $250 billion annually due to employee theft.”ou have to won- der if there isn’t a strong connection. Follow the leader is an easy game to play in politics and business. Such behavior can ultimately cost a company dearly. The thing is, lying should matter regardless of the bottom-line impact. For one, who wants to live in a nation of cheats and liars. never knowing if the person you’re dealing with is being square? And here you hqvc two prominent leaders-one from politics and one from business-seeming to suggest that lying was just a normal course of things you do to navigate your way through a diff~cult day. Such be- havior doesn’t just affect those two men; it can wreak havoc on the people who have put their trust in the leadership of these two. When lying seems to have taken hold at the top of an organization. the prospect for behavior in the rest of the organization is dm. It creates an atmosphere where the chief executive is sending down the mes- sage of “do as I say, not as I do.” “As long as there’s this raging ambiguity and there’s no account- ability, people will start generating more and more lax responses to morally ambiguous situations,” says Steven Berglas, a management consultant and a clinical psychologist at the Harvard Medical School. “Most people will start lowering standards for what’s tolerable. And that manifests itself in people going along with what’s being rein- forced. People are going to lie for expediency.” I’m not suggesting that everybody should be able to tell every bit of truth every walung minute of every day. No one can manage that. We’re faced daily with the task of trying to succeed by rnak- ing choices about when to be vague or when something is better left unsaid. Joseph L. Badaracco, a professor of business ethics at Hanard Busi- ness School and the author of Defining Moments: When Managers True Lies 133 Must Choose Between Right and Right, has said that “Not telling the Cull truth is different from outright lying. If you’re going to run a big company or run the country, you can’t put all your cards on the table; that’s simply naive. Life is a series of different games, and you sort of play by the rules” when it comes to levels of candor in different cir- cumstance~.~ When you’re negotiating in business, for example, clearly it’s my- opic to tip off at the outset what you’re really after in a final deal. But even business school students appear to know the difference between posturing in a negotiation and outright lying. In a recent survey con- ducted by Professors Roy Lewicki of Ohio State’s Fisher College of Business and Robert Robinson of the Harvard Business School among MBA students at Ohio State and Harvard, MBA students were asked to give a rating from 1 on the low end to 7 on the high end of the eth- ical proprietary of a variety of negotiating tactics. While they gave a high appropriateness rating (5.84) to “making an opening demand that is far greater than what one really hopes to settle for,” they gave a much lower score (1.99) to “intentionally misrepresenting factual information to your opponent in order to support your negotiating arguments or position.”8 We can make reasoned, responsible choices about how much of the truth we disclose during business dealings. Sissela Bok wrote that if “lies and truthful statements appear to achieve the same result or appear to be as desirable to the person contemplating lying the lies should be ruled out.”‘ It’s not just during business negotiations that hsclosing the entire truth may seem inappropriate. At times it can even seem barbaric to disclose the whole truth, as in the case where a doctor can choose how detailed to get when telling a dying patient how hs health and body will deteriorate. Bok herself has observed: “There’s great room for discretion, for knowing when not to speak.”” When Gates and Clinton took the courtroom stand, it wasn’t a case of showing discretion. Instead-perhaps on the advice of their respective attorneydates expressed that he wasn’t sure of the 134 THE COMMON GOOD meaning of a word as simple as “cancerned” and Clinton wanted his questioner to clarify what was meant by the word “is.” Such self-defensive lies can ultimately inform everything you do. As a result, argues Bok, life turns Into living a lie.” And when that happens to a leader, he or she can be sure that it will affect those who follow him. There are indeed strong business reasons not to lie-none of these reasons will come as a huge surprise to anyone who has spent any time observing human behavior. “From a managerial point of view, you should have a strong prejuhce toward being clear, &rect and honest,” says Joe Badaracco, because lying “becomes a bad habit. You might get caught. You set a bad example. The people who work with you i probably aren’t dumb; they’ll copy what you do.”I2 So the real question for leaders like Bill Clinton or Bill Gates is that when their behavior becomes public, can they expect the people who work for them to aspire to any better behavior? But a bigger challenge for people doing business today is to guard against becoming a person who begins to live a lie, how they can keep self-defensive lies permeating all they do. While some moralists may claim how simple it is to tell the truth all the time and that the truth will set you free, the reality is that it’s not always so simple. Psychologist Brad Blanton, author of che book Radical Honesty, for example, may argue that telling the truth is the only way for us to get beyond our adolescence and that “it hurts one not to tell the truth”” and that the mild stress dsorden we suffer from are the d- rect result of the fact that we’re all “tqapped in lies,” the truth is that it’s just not that simple for most people to be totally honest all the time in their business dealings. There are hfferent degrees of wrongness to the variety of lies that can be told. Robert Solomon who writes about and teaches business True Lies 135 ethics, observes. “Lying may always be wrong, but some lies are much more Lvrong than others. Truth nlay always be desirable, but the whole truth and nothing but the truth is just as likely to be a nighcrnare.”” A clear example of how businesspeople sornetirrles find thcr~~szlves being less than totally truthful is when they’re just starting their corn- panies and they’re trying to bootstrap–operate with little cash and generate growth from sales of products or services-their way up. Though it’s rarely talked about, if you ask CEOs who started their cornparues with little cash, many of them will readrly admit to an em- bellishment here and a fabrication there. Every year, Inc. magazine publishes a list of the 500 fastest-growing private companies in the United States. One year, the magazine: sur- veyed the CEOs of companies on the 1995 and 1996 Inc. 500 lists who said they had grown their businesses with little or no capital. Of those who responded, 14 percent said that bootstrapping, by defini- tion, requires “unsavory business practices.” I was curious about what kind of behavior they would lump into the “unsavory” category, so I called them to find out. For some entrepreneurs, “unsavory” lnvotved stringing out a supplier on a payment or two, but for others it meant out-and-out lying.” “Sometimes when you’re backed up against the wall, your instincts take over, and you do what you have to do to survive,” says Nick Molina, remembering the early days of his company, Let’s Talk Cel- lular 8( Wireless, which sells cellular phones.’6 When you’re first starting a business, all you can really do is sell people on your idea for what you and your fledgling company can do. After dl, customers, vendors, employees, and all of the other busi- nesspeople you come in contact with want some reassurance that they’re involved with a CEO of substance, someone who exudes con- fidence and gives off a sense of stability, who exudes success. “When you’re small and you’re trying to establish larger con- tracts, obviously you’ll attempt to do everything you can to make customers believe you’re of size and capable of doing the work,” says Neal DeAngelo, cofounder of DeAngelo Brothers, a landscape- ! .x THE CC)MMON GOOD management company in Hazleton, Pennsylvania. But DeAngelo ar- gues that “it’s just not true” that “people who go into business with no nzoney have to lie.” DeAngelo may be right, but for some in business, they flnd that it sure comes in handy. When, for example, Molina’s company was peddling cellular phones and pagers out of a van, he admits that falling short of the truth was practically a standard practice. Consider what he had to do to get Let’s Talk Cellular space in the Dadeland Mall, in Miami. He was having trouble getting the leasing agent for the mall to take his calls and, more important, to take him seriously. “I called every day and could never get past the secretary,” says Molina. “Then one day I called up and she asked me who was calling. I said, ‘Tell him 4 this is his doctor and it’s a family emergency.’ ” The leasing agent took the call, and Molina got the time to charm him. But that’s not the end of the story. When the leasing agent told Molina that to be considered, companies needed to be “established,” Molina took that to mean lie needed to have been in business for at least two years. “So we manipulated our financials, and we lied our way through that and said, ‘Yes, we have,’ ” reports Molina, who says he had actually beer1 in business for six months. When the leasing agent told him that his central place ofbusiness had to occupy a “sub- stantial” amount of square footage to be considered, Molina says, “We put a wide-angle camera in a corner and filled up the office with friends, family, and employees, and just took pictures so it looked like a very busy office.” Then, according to Molina, they told the leasing agent that their central office contlned more square footage than it ac- tually dd. For good measure, “We parked our van in front of a build- ing and took a picture of it and made it sound like that was our buildng,” says Molina. Molina’s story suggests that a stockpile of untruths can be as handy as a reservoir of cash. That just isn’t true. Oh sure, there’s a lot of pos- turing that goes on when companies get started, but there’s a qualita- tive dfference between lying and posturing. It’s one thing to send a photo of a busy workplace to a leasing agent hoping that he’ll assume True Lier 1.37 it’s larger than it is. It’s quite another to tell him that you have more square footage than you do. Most companies have postured at some point in their history to win a client or grow the company. But pos- turing is different from lying. Many CEOs who read the story of the CEOs who said it took unsavory behavior to bootstrap a company clearly understand the dlf- ference. An owner of an employee benefits firm in Massachusetts wrote: “Posturing, embellishing, or ‘selling the sizzle’ are as old as business.” But he continued, “On the other hand, manipulatiw fi- nancial~, holding vendor money, bending agreements, and other less- than-honest actions are unacceptable. Those actions ultimately create less trust in the marketplace.”” THE DIFF-EKENCE I~ETWEEN POSTURING AND LYI~C; When you’re just starting up a company, nobody expects you to come right out and blurt: “I don’t yet have any track record, so I don’t re- ally know if I can do what I say I can do. Besides, I don’t reaIly have the employees in place to do the work anyxvay.” Prospective partners of any kind–suppliers, employees, customers-judge you partly on your ability to convince them that you’re going to be able to deliver on your grandiose plans. So you talk enthusiastically, you bid aggres- sively, you lease office space that’s a tad nicer than what you can re- ally afford. That’s posturing. Lying is a different story. Everybody postures. Consider the whole practice of bargaining. Stephen Carter, observes in his book Integrity that a “weakness in conceiving integrity as mere honesty and conceiving honesty as telling all that you know is that it would make bargaining impossible. When we bargain, by definition we take positions that are not our final po- sitions. I see a house that is listed for sale at $100,000. I wish to buy it and decide that I will pay the asking price if necessary, but my first offer is just $75,000. The owner responds, ‘I am sorry to say that I True Lies 139 13% THE COMMON GOO11 cannot take a dollar less than $95,000.’ I answer: ‘My absolute top is 880,000.’ Now, I am not telling the truth, and neither, I suspect, is the owner of the house, but we are not really being dishonest either, and we certainly are not acting without integrity.”” The truth is that when we go to buy a house, a car, or any number of things for which bargaining is expected, when we make our first offer, we’re low-balling-if we’re smart. And so is the person who comes back to us with his first price. We’re both posturing to try to get the deal that works. Are we being ruthlessly honest about every detail of what our personal finances will let us afford? No, but then that would be just plain dumb in the context of buying a house or a car. Anybody who manages a conlpany knows that there are times when saying nothing-and, as a result, letting employees’ imagina- tions run wild with their assumptions-is far wiser than disclosing everything. “The one time I decided to just be honest with our em- ployees about our company’s precarious financial condition,” recalls an Inc. 500 CEO I’d interviewed as part of the “unsavory tactics” ran- vassing, “I called all of my people together and said: ‘Look, we’re handlng out payroll checks, but we’re broke. If you have to cash your check, I understand. But this is where we are financially. Could you guys just hold off cashing your checks for a week?’ All 40 employees ran to the bank that day.” The CEO, who requested anonymity, says chat if the situation were to happen again, he certainly wouldn’t be as truthful. Most people understand that in certain situations posturing is not only appropriate, it’s expected. It’s often even appreciated. When, for example, Magic Box, a provider of local- and wide- area computer networks, had its first brochures designed, it featured I multiple departments and capabilities for the company. The thing was that the brochure actually listed more departments than the company had employees. “We would look like we were a multidepartment corn- pany when we were only three or four people at the time,” says co- founder Israel Fintz. “We departmentalized everything, and basically, I was doing all of it. But I clever lied and said we had seven people when we had just four.” Fintz was giving prospective customers wide latitude in assuming what his company was capable of doing. He wasn’t misinforming them. Posturing takes form in what seems like a countless number of varia- tions. In canvassing the CEOs of former Inc. 500 companies about various posturing tactics they used when growing their companies, several classic examples surfaced, including: Customers can’t live without us. When Jim Zona, CEO of Pitts- burgh Plastics, was trying to sell his company’s shoe-insole inserts to retail outlets, he’d have someone stop in a store and ask if it carried Gel-Soles. Two days later, he’d have somebody else stop at the same store. After a few days, he’d have a salesperson call on the store to see if it wanted to carry his product. “And they’d : – . 3. say, Lome on down. recaiis Zona. “OILCC we goi in chose stores, we’d tell everybody to go there to buy the product.” Sure, we can do that. To get started and bring in much-needed capital, Steve Burkhart, cofounder of Advanced Micro- Electronics, a Vincennes, Indiana, computer-maintenance com- pany, put a bid on the service contract for a local university. The problem was that he didn’t have a clue how to price the contract or what would be involved in maintaining all the com- puters on campus. “We just didn’t know a lot of things at that point,” says Burkhart. He bid $41,000 with payment due up front. Since everyone else bid more than f 100,000, Advanced Micro got the job. The college never asked for references. The college remained a customer, and Burkhart says he kept bidhng on projects he knew nothing about. “Right now we’re trying to put together a bid for seven GE plants in Mexico. We don’t have a clue how to do international business,” he says. I’ve got a closet full of people. In 1990, when Robert Luster started Luster Construction Management, a San Francisco-based 141 1 THE COMMON GOOD True Lies 141 consulting firm that caten to large construction projects, he couldn’t afford to hire any employees. “But,” he says, “I had 25 individuals I’d already interviewed that as I found a job I could hire.” That’s how Luster says he built his business. He had per- mission from the 25 applicants to use their resumes, which he would bring to prospective construction-project clients. “In professional services,” says Luster, “they’re not so much inter- ested in the company as in the individual you can deliver.” The posturing that all of these company CEOs undertook (and there are countless more examples that any business owner can add to the list) w-as alone with the sole aim ofpainting a picture of a company that was more established than it was. When Luster promised to de- liver “his” employees to the site, he simply &d what every good com- pany owner tries to do when starting out on a shoestrin~xude confidence, determination, and ruthless optimism. Certainly, that’s often done with the goal of trying to get the upper hand in a business relationship. But–and this is a big “but” here: You have to be clear, and make clear to the people with whom you are doing business, that you are not going to do just anything to get that upper hand. You have to make clear and be clear in your own mind that you will not cross the line and start lying to your customers. Because once you cross that Line, it’s difficult to stem the tide of your own lies. It takes a rigorous com- mitment to keep foremost in your mind the difference between putting on a good face and blatantly lylng about your credentials, your business, your services, or your products. In the introduction to her book Lying, Sissela Bok stressed that her “main task will not be to produce a sordid catalogue of falsehoods and corrupt dealings, nor to go over once again what each day’s newspaper reveals about deception in high places. Rather, I want to stress the more vexing dilemmas of ordnary life; dilemmas which beset those who think that their lies are too insigruficant to matter much, and others who believe that lying can protect someone or ben- efit society. We need to look most searchingly, not at what we would all reject as unconscionable. but at those cases where many see good reasons to lie.”‘9 When you’re just starting a business and are strapped for cash it’s all too easy to justify why it’s necessary for you to blur that line-in fact, cross that line from posturing into outright lying to stay in business. Once you cross that line, however, it’s an easy slide to where you, like Molina of Let’s Talk Cellular & Wireless, start referring to your most questionable strategies as “actually pretty innovative” rather than rccogmzing them for what they are. Molina says he developed his “in- novative” strategy when his vendors grew tired oflare payments from him and required cash on delivery. His technique involved using a check embosser to imprint amounts on a biank check, and typlng “ccr- tified check” on it so the delivery person would leave the inventory for which he was supposed to get cash or a certified check. That would pve Molina a couple of days to actually get some money in the bank. “When the vendor got their check, they’d call and say, ‘Hey, thjs is a regular check,’ and we’d say, ‘Oh, I’m sorry. Just send it back and we’ll send you a cashier’s check.’ And then they’d say, ‘Oh no, we’ll just cash this one.’ ” What’s wrong with such lying anyway? Well, we’d like to believe folks like DeAngelo, the cofounder of the landscape-management com- pany, who argues that “once you get a reputation for being a cheat, a liar, a stealer, you’re nbt going to last very long in any industry.” DeAngelo’s advice is well-taken and shared by many, including Stephen Carter who observed in his book Integrity that “in all but the most extreme cases, leaders will do well to recogruze tllat the judgment on whether they possess integrity will be based in part on whether they are willing to be forthright in the face of risk-not on how skilled they are in the arts of deception and evasion.”20 141 THE COMMON GOOD True Lies 133 Sadly, depending on how you define “long,” predtctions such as DeAngelo’s don’t always seem to be the case. Everyone has heard stories of company owners who have lied and stayed in business none theless. One problem with this is that when you’re convinced your sur- vival depends on a lie, short-term thinking takes hold and you can lose sight of the fact that long-term you may have lost your credibil- ity in the marketplace. Another problem, too, is that, hke the cases ofBill Clinton and Bill Gates, if you’re the leader of a company and you blur the rules, the folks in your company don’t know what’s acceptable behavior any- more. In fact, employees may decide that it’s not only okay to lie as the boss does, but that it’s the only way to get ahead in this company. When employees mirror such behavior, the consequences can get ugly. “Beginning early on to stretch the truth or to lie outright sets a dan- gerous precedent and gives license to other emplnyees around yor~,” says a vice president of an insurance company based in Ge~r~a.~’ Em- ployees who sense a culture where lying is acceptable may think that that goes for stealing as well. Sadly, lying is often the result of laziness or habit more than any- thing else. It’s “only where a lie is a last resort can one even begin to consider whether or not it is morally justified,” observes Bok. “Mild as this initial stipulation sounds, it would, if taken seriously, eliminate a great many lies told out of catelessness or habit or unexarnined good intention^.”^^ That’s a very good rule of thumb: Don’t even consider lying un- less you’ve explored every other option and it is indeed the last resort. And even then you need to wrestle with the question of whether the lie you are about to tell has any moral justification. So here’s some practical, bottom-line business advice: Don’t lie. Just don’t do it. While there are many concerns about the effect of lying in busi- ness, the biggest concern about lying becoming acceptable behavior was articulated by that CEO who had requested anonymity in the “unsavory activity” canvassing. He asked me: “Aren’t you concerned that some people will take some of these ideas and say, ‘Hey, why didn’t I think of that?’ ” Ultimately, that is the price you pay for allowing lies to become an acceptable way of doing business. Once you’re recopzed for what you are, then your employees, your customers, and your vendors will think nothing of turning around and lying to you to get what they need. The real fear is that the lies we tell will come back to be the lies we’re told. And worse yet, that as another admired leader is caught in a sworn lie, we become a nation of liars where no one knows the rules of the game. If trust in your partners in commerce erodes enough, the time you could be spending doing your job or running your business gives way to trying to figure out whether someone’s lying to you. The game becomes to catch someone in a lie before you’re caught lying yourself. You’re forced to lie, you tell yourself, because it’s expected and that you’re nalve if you don’t. The business of business should be to make or create something the public wants to buy. When it becomes a game of lies, it’s easy to lose sight of that. That’s not why you got into business and it’s not how you want to do business-r have business done to you. Long-term-and it’s tough to have a long-term mentality in a short-term world-you can’t sustain a business built on lies. Long-term you lose the customer’s faith, the employee’s loyalty, and possibly you’re own job or position. Besides being wrong, lying just isn’t wodn the risk.