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It's Spike Lee Time!

By Art van Bodegraven | 12/07/2016 | 8:07 AM

Obviously, we'll save "a day that will live in infamy" for another time.  But, I was struck by a recent on-line piece from an un-named source that was clear about the responsibility of leaders to say "no" to "a good thing".

The examples of failures to say "no" are legion.  Buying Takata airbags known to contain an instable ingredient.  Succumbing to temptations to fudge results (including emissions) submitted to sleepwalking bureaucrats for approval.  Saving a penny here and a nickel there, confident that a resulting relatively rare loss of life might be acceptable - or might be escaped entirely, with luck.  Begging relief from mandates when solutions proved either elusive or difficult.  Changing the rules when falling behind in the game.

Look, short-cuts, avoidances, and known deadly risks are not good things that require contemplation before accepting or rejecting.  And it's not the leader's proper role to assess the risks of either getting caught or causing harm by adopting the so-called good things that are actually bad things.

The leader's job is to do the right thing, every time, all the time.  That some decision might yield a pleaing result to shareholders doesn't make it the right thing.  That a career might be advanced is not evidence of goodness.  That someone's feelings or ego might be assuaged is not necessarily a step in the right direction.

Do the right thing.  Regardless of consequence, live with yourself, model for others, and make your mama proud.  Anything less is a manifestation of a soul's corruption.



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About Art van Bodegraven

Art van Bodegraven

Art van Bodegraven (1939 - 2017) was Managing Principal of the van Bodegraven Associates consultancy and Founding Principal of Discovery Executive Services, which develops and delivers supply chain educational programs. He was formerly Chair of the Supply Chain Group AG, Partner at The Progress Group LLC, Development Executive at CSCMP, Practice Leader with S4 Consulting, and a Managing Director in Coopers & Lybrand's consulting practice. Concentrating in supply chain management and logistics for over 20 years in his 50+ year business career, he has led ground-breaking strategic, operational, and educational projects for leading US and global clients. Art was principal co-author of DC Velocity's Basic Training monthly column for a decade, and was the principal co-author, with Ken Ackerman, of Fundamentals of Supply Chain Management, the definitive primer in the field. His popular blog, The Art of Art, has been a staple of DC Velocity's web site since its inception.


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