All Journal Entries

  • (Day 626) Influencing Ethics

    The Importance of ‘Don’t’ in Inducing Ethical Employee Behavior

    Published: February 28, 2011
    Author: Carmen Nobel

    Executive Summary:

    In a new study, HBS professors Francesca Gino and Joshua D. Margolis look at two ways that companies can encourage ethical behavior: the promotion of good deeds or the prevention of bad deeds. It turns out that employees tend to act more ethically when focused on what not to do. That can be problematic in firms where success is commonly framed in terms of advancement of positive outcomes rather than prevention of bad ones. Key concepts include:

    • In general, there are two ways a company can encourage ethical conduct among its employees: either the promotion of good actions and outcomes or the prevention of bad ones.
    • Through several experiments, the professors found that inducing a prevention focus will lead to ethical behavior more than inducing a promotion focus.
    • In encouraging ethical behavior among employees, it behooves firms to consider focusing on preventing negative outcomes, not only in creating a code of ethics but also in setting goals and framing task directives.


  • (Day 624) Fight Fear With Fear

    Below is an article written by an anonymous London police officer who was involved in the riots this past week. He provides a graphic account of what he witnessed and ends with the following ominous warning to rioters.

    “There are still rioters and looters out there who we haven’t caught yet. What would I say to them? It’s simple. We will make sure justice is done. Live in fear of every knock at the door. Pack your toothbrush – we’re coming for you”

    I was feeling compassion for the police throughout the article until I read that last line. With this kind of attitude there will be more and more hate and anger. The following is the full text from his blog. The question I have for you is, “How do you build trust back in this hateful environment?”

    I have worked every night and every day this week. Since last Saturday, when I was on the streets of Tottenham in north London in the early hours as rioting and looting broke out, through to the early hours of yesterday morning. I have clocked up around 125 hours, too many of them being pelted by stones, petrol bombs and, in one case, in the chaos of it all, by a 4ft ornamental palm tree.


  • (Day 614) Unselfish Gene

    Below is a summary of an article called the Unselfish Gene — by Yochai Benkler.  There are those who believe humanity can only be successful if we design social systems around our selfish nature.  The question I have been thinking about is, “Are we capable of evolving past selfishness?”  Benkler thinks we can and gives some examples. We need more research like this, it gives me hope for the future! [...]

  • (Day 566) Transparency – The Truth Hurts

    The picture above comes up when you search for the word “transparency” in google.  Morgan Spurlock mentioned this fact during his Ted Talk and I realized it was a great way to get your attention. This blog is primarily about how social media is creating transparency. Ironically, it was written from someone who did not want to be identified. I know and respect  him as well as the two people he writes about in the blog below. I share this with the expectation it will provoke discussion on the topic. It is not my intention to judge the story teller or the participants, as I believe they are all good and well intentioned people.


  • (Day 562) Leadership and the Structure of Trust

    Robert Porter Lynch, co-auther of my Trust book, has just published an amazing document on the structure of Trust. It is the most comprehensive work I have seen on the subject. I highly recommend taking a look and  passing it along to others when you are done.  Click here to read the article!

  • (Day 530) I Need My Head Examined

    After talking with my friends and colleagues I am confident what I am about to write will receive little applause (most of them already thought I should have my head examined before I wrote this blog).  I take the risk to express my thoughts because I think in the long run the values expressed here will be of higher importance than the short term actions we have taken.

    I first became aware I was thinking differently when I read the transcript of the interview between Steve Kroft (60 Minutes) and President Obama.  They were discussing the “Osama Bin Laden hit.”  Take a minute to read it below,  you will notice the quote that caught my attention highlighted in blue. [...]

  • (Day 504) Staying Positive In Chicago

    On my trip back from Chicago I had a trust breakdown with my airline. I decided I was not going to act like everyone else and carry on about their poor service and pollute the “Trust Ecosystem” – not so easy to do.  I made a short video about my experience.

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The Trust Tour ended August 22, 2012 at 1:20pm EST
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