As Thanksgiving approaches, I am reminded of how much we have to be thankful for in the city of Memphis. Recently, Bill Rhodes, President, Chairman & CEO of AutoZone spoke at the NEXUS Class of 2015 November session. After hearing him speak I am so very thankful we have leaders like him leading our city.
Mr. Rhodes spoke on “Making Ethical Decisions as a Leader” and he started with a reminder that nobody is perfect.
He stated that being an ethical leader requires having a moral compass and to change/recalibrate your moral compass with the world around you.
It was so refreshing that he brought everything back to the basics and said to be ethical is to remember what your mama taught you.
- treat others as you want to be treated
- be the best you, you can be
- if you don’t have anything nice to say don’t say anything at all
- reconcile your differences/don’t hold grudges
He shared examples from his life as well as his guidelines on how to make ethical decisions include asking these four questions:
- If everyone knew the decision I made would I be proud or embarrassed?
- Does my inclination fall into a gray area? Don’t play in the gray.
- Would my decision require an explanation to justify, if so you will not get the chance to explain?
- Does this decision cross one of my self-imposed boundaries?
He encouraged each person there to be a Servant leader and take time to work with someone. Mentor and turn the ordinary person to be extraordinary. Mr. Rhodes gave a personal example of how he did this and in my opinion he is extremely extraordinary.