- July 1, 2021
- Posted by: Stratford Team
- Category: Business
Values matter and many of these decisions are this black and white.
I have a couple stories from the past that shed light on the present. We spent some time, back in the 90s, inside one of the world’s most famous corporations, a maker of business machines. We saw how they were entertaining clients lavishly, spending unusual sums in ways that were in an ethical gray area, not illegal, but borderline. They were bribing customers in the form of expensive entertainment. When my associate asked one of their sales managers about it, he said, “The Japanese just bribe their customers outright. They just hand over money. This is the only way we can compete.” They were wrong about this being the only way, but I’ll get to that later. They felt the need to compete in this manner because they looked at every sale as a slam dunk, not a single moment in a deepening ongoing relationship that brought long-term value to a customer, a relationship…