Principles learned from the Mars Pathfinder mission.
Adapted from the book, “The Mars Pathfinder Approach to Faster-Better-Cheaper” (Pritchett and Muirhead,1998).
Be fully trustworthy.
Some of the author’s comments: “We can’t expect to achieve at the Pathfinder level without special effort. It takes a very effective team. And whether it’s stated or unstated, such high-performance work groups operate according to a pretty clear code of conduct. Everyone is expected to help create and maintain a climate of trust.
“This calls for mutual respect, and that requires each individual to be fully competent in his or her domain. In other words, your performance must be ‘worth trusting.’
“The methods you use to get those results matter as well. Trust hinges on openness and honesty; on one’s personal integrity.”
Although they’re looking at this issue from the team level, the concept applies to you as an individual, as well. As a freelancer and network marketer for years, I realize that everything I do reflects on me. I’ve made a few mistakes over the years. We all do. We are human, after all.
Don’t assume that you can ignore it; that the customer won’t notice. Oh, he will. And the longer you delay in owning up to the mistake, the bigger the sore will fester in your customer. Worse yet is if you lie to cover it up. That lie will be discovered, and your reputation will really take a hit. Honesty is the best policy. Fact is, good guys do finish first.
How about you? When you or your firm made a mistake, did you contact the customer right away? It actually goes smoother than you think. Customers appreciate your honesty, and usually are understanding. Ever been involved in an unethical situation? How did you handle it? Feel free to comment below.
You can find #5 in this series, “Embrace eccentricity,” here.