Our trades people often work through the night to make sure our infrastructure is running properly.
Our trade workers often work through the night to keep our infrastructure up and running properly.

With Independence Day just around the corner, I’ve been thinking about the value of honor. Choosing to do things for the sake of the many, as opposed to the good of the ‘you’ (yes, I know it’s generally the good of the ‘few’ but stay with me…). Whether we’re talking about service to our country, community, company, or family. It’s the choices we make every day.

My old boss and friend Travis Everton recently gave me a great book recommendation. It’s called “Beyond Entrepreneurship” by Jim Collins and William (Bill) Lazier. A quote in the book really resonated with me. Jim said, “Bill taught that core values are not the soft stuff. Living to core values is the hard stuff”.

Years ago, I was in sales, selling fire alarm and security systems. We’d just picked up a new security line and none of us knew much about it. A customer of mine needed an access control system and this one (theoretically) checked all the boxes. I was honest with the buyer and told her we didn’t have any experience with the system. She asked the logical question, “why should I buy it from you”? I told her (and knew it was true), “because we have the best techs in the business. I know they can do it”.

Fast forward. She bought the system from us, and our techs were able to install it and program it properly. But you know what else? They literally stayed all night because they were struggling with it, but they weren’t going to walk away from the site and leave the customer’s system down.

Would I have expected them or asked them to do that? No way in hell! But honestly, that wasn’t the point. They took pride in their work (as they should have) and weren’t going to let the customer down.

That’s staying true to your core values. That’s the hard stuff. That’s honor.