My daughter was inducted this last Friday into National Honor Society (NHS). The whole family was there—brothers, grandma, her dad and I—to acknowledge and celebrate this major accomplishment, especially at a college prep school.
As the teacher read off the merits a student needs to accomplish in order to be invited into NHS, I started wondering if those that had been inducted in, all these years past, since 1921—to be exact—had still lived their lives with the same motto: character, scholarship, leadership, service. Had they lived out or were living out these criteria in business, art, academics, service, science for which they had been honored in their youth?
So, it got me thinking: if they were living out these four pillars of NHS, they would surely, then, affect whatever they did in life in the same manner. For instance, if they were showing such character to be honored in high school, then that same character was probably still evident in their chosen career or field of work.
Stay with me here. (Sometimes I get on a roll and you never know where my thought process will go!) The connection in business, I believe, is poignant. The NHS is on to something that can be life-long: “To create enthusiasm for scholarship, to stimulate a desire to render service, to promote leadership, and to develop character . . . “. It seems they are trying to develop responsible and successful adults for the future, essentially.
What if you decided to employ these traits to your business? What would the outcome be if you lived out:
- Character: “qualities of honesty, courage, or integrity” = honesty in carrying out everyday duties within to employees and outside to customers or clients.
- Scholarship: “learning; knowledge acquired by study” = staying sharp in your craft by attending conferences or avid reading on the subjects that affect your business.
- Leadership: “authoritativeness, influence, command, effectiveness, sway, clout” = taking the reins of your business and influencing every component toward the goals you have for success.
- Service: “helpful activity; help; aid” for others = being a servant leader to your employees, clients/customers, and community—caring about them to help them get what they need and want and to influence them to do the same for others.
I believe that if anyone in business took these pillars seriously and kept them as the foundation of their trade, they and their business would be successful.
Granted, these pillars must be solid, unwavering, and structurally sound—these ideals must be carried out daily. If so, they will hold up under the weight of fiscal crisis and employee issues. They will hold up against the winds of change and the storms of downturn. They will continue to be the foundation of success every day, every year, every decade.
Are the pillars of your business solid or are there fissures showing from the pressure? Is there repair that needs to be done to any of the pillars to make them more “sound”? We’d love to hear from you. Kroma Marketing