Mark Twain on values—think long term

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In a speech on the value of honesty, Mark Twain once told this story, “when I was boy, I was walking along a street and happened to spy a cart full of watermelons.  I was fond of watermelon, so I sneaked quietly  on the cart and snitched one. Then I ran into a nearby alley and sank my teeth into the melon.   No sooner had I done so,  however, than a strange feeling  came over me. Without a moment’s hesitation, I made my decision. I walked back to the cart, replaced the melon- and took a ripe one.”

taken from John Maxwell’s – “The 5 levels of leadership”

Although this is an amusing story, the topic is a serious one-values.

Leaders have an intense amount of pressure to produce results.  They can be exposed to many temptations to cut corners to meet expectations. Beware.

It can take alot of time and effort to build your reputation of consistent competence and character, so be careful when you face pressures and are tempted to compromise your core values to benefit in the short run.  Yes, you can gain in the short term. but you can lose bigtime in the long run.

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