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Better a bad truth than a good lie

June 16, 2010

I really dislike sneaky people.

I’ve had my share of them in the past few weeks. You know the type: they do something dishonest or unethical, but then they hide it in a load of justification. Or, they blame it on other people, how they themselves are blameless but were pushed into the dishonesty. I’ve seen a lot of it — avoiding doing the right thing, promising to do the right thing and not doing it (then avoiding communicating because you don’t want to face that you’re being dishonest), out right lies…you name it, it’s out there.

But something this week took the cake.  A (now) ex-employee of a friend’s company announced her decision to leave the company citing a variety of reasons. But, this employee decided in the resignation letter to use an interesting argument to justify her leaving. She essentially said that she had proved her loyalty to the company by ratting out another employee who had been stealing customers from the company to open his own business.  Now, the interesting thing about this was, at the same time she ratted HIM out for his unethical behavior, she was working for him as a subcontractor.  So, somehow this person should get Brownie points because she turned in an employee who was stealing from the company, but never puts two-and-two together that her conduct was even worse!

Most of the time these kinds of people just go on their merry way, oblivious to the fact that they stink when it comes to character and judgment.  Most of the time we just let them get away with it.  But it’s the complete disconnect that they are even doing something wrong that floors me.  You wonder: are they just wired differently that they don’t understand even the basic essentials of right and wrong? Or has “right and wrong” become so relative to be virtually meaningless?  “It’s ok if I don’t get caught…” or “I need the money so badly so it’s ok…” I don’t know.

These kind of sneaky people are completely spineless, if you ask me. If they had a situation or a grievance with someone or something (like a company), it takes guts to come out and be straightforward about the issues. It’s easier to hide than to grow a backbone, I guess.

I’d love to hear your stories of sneaks and cheats, and whether or not they were caught or held accountable. Please, no names, though…and if you have an ethical dilemma you’d like to pose or have others weigh in on, feel free to share.  I think most of the readers who visit and participate here all have a strong sense of moral justice.  Chime in and let me know that the world isn’t too far gone to be returned to a more civil and decent time.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. Weary1 permalink
    June 19, 2010 9:08 am

    Boy, do I have stories! Let me see if I can whittle it down. First, my husband is a contractor who worked for a company that made fun of it’s clients at their Christmas parties. Oh, that was before parties were cut “due to the economy”. Meanwhile, the owners are taking week, if not monthlong trips to exotic locales. Then they laid people off while giving their college friends paid leaves. To add insult to injury, they tried blackballing every laid off employee. They didn’t want the competition because they know they’re overpriced and that people know how skilled the line staff who were laid off were.

    On top of this, there was a woman who knew that these newly jobless staff needed income so she hired them to do a job. But what she really wanted was free demolition. So before they could get to the next phase, she asked for a smaller job to be done first. She then complained that the main job was taking too long and fired them and while she was at it, asked them to return the money for doing a bad job on the small job. The thing is, her realtor had someone else she wanted to use because she gets kickbacks. Illegal but that’s a whole other story. So, of course, this other contractor knows he has the potential for big money and says whatever it takes to blast the work already done so he can get the contract. They worked it so that the demo and most of the prep could be done without having to pay for most if it. She took advantage of people who did a great job for her because she knew they were in transition and wouldn’t have the resources to contest her claims. Or so she thought.

    After consulting an attorney, it turns out that she could have been sued for breach of contract and had to pay in full without having the work done but it would have meant being tied up for months in litigation. Instead, she got some money so we could be rid of her toxic behavior. No wonder she has money but no friends or partner.

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