What an honest compliment could accomplish...

  • 2 Min read
Recently I picked up a little booklet I had not read for many years. At the time it really inspired me because of its examples and quotes but most of all for its content of course: simple and to the point.

It is a little book called: There is no such thing as “Business” Ethics, by John C. Maxwell.

Inspiring as ethics is not only important, it is in my opinion crucial! It does not apply to one situation but to every situation.

Some companies have “ethics first” in their values, but they only proclaim it and do not live by it. Maxwell’s golden rule to judge is the following:

“How would you like to be treated in this situation”.

Think about it, a simple but deeply honest question.

This question is an integrity question for everyone.

In general, how do people like to be treated?

Maxwell describes six different and very important factors.


1.    We like to be valued.

Many employees leave their job not because of salary but because they do not feel valued by their employer and/or colleagues. Consequence is a lack of engagement and motivation resulting in departure at some point.

Valuing is acknowledging how someone improves the situation around them.


2.    We like to be appreciated.

Appreciation is being grateful for someone’s skills and efforts and letting this person know about it.


3.    We like to be trusted.

Without trust you will not get responsibility and authority, two ingredients to a successful and happy work experience.


4.    We like to be respectful.

Respect above all touches us deeper. We feel it and need it.


5.    We like to be understood.

Understanding someone is learning from that person: It is being open to his or her idea. There’s a saying: “First understand before you can be understood”.


6.    We do not want people to take advantage of us.

This is a deep-rooted feeling all people have in common.

Do these thoughts cross your mind when you think about your relation with other people, how you are treated or how you treat people at work?

These attitudes are easy to incorporate in your behaviour when dealing with other people. Once you do you will also apply ethics more to its full meaning.

If we would all do this, for sure we would create a better world, but long before that, we can create a fun work environment where people wish to stay and activate their full potential.


Frank Vande Voorde


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