Businesses will never be truly successful unless a climate of good character fills
the workplace. Businesses have proven that, when character is emphasized,
there are quantifiable results in productivity, use of time, and profits.
Several years ago, Tom Hill, of Kimray Corporation in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma,
noticed problems in his company with personnel, ranging from drug and alcohol
use, tardiness, and low morale to slow development in skills. The overall result
was low productivity.
Mr. Hill began to develop materials on character qualities
and out of that grew Character First, an organization that has spawned
character programs for schools, cities, and nations. The International
Association of Character Cities was birthed, and it is with this organization that
Hempstead is affiliated.
The results of integrating character into Kimray Corporation were astounding.
Employees were happier and more productive and felt better about their work
and home relationships. Absenteeism and low morale decreased markedly. To
state the benefits to Kimray from character in hard facts, the Workman's Comp
costs at Kimray went down from $24,000 a month to $4,000, a reliable indicator
of the character of the employees.
Other companies have reported amazing results. One corporation had a 10 fold
increase in their profits after a character program was initiated. Another
company said their Workman's Comp expenses had gone from $474,000 a year to
$47,000, down 90%! A nursing home that had had a 100% turnover rate in
employees each year reported that their rate was down to 6% after character
training. Hospitals have found that patient surveys showed a marked increase in
"satisfied" responses after the hospitals emphasized character.
Character training not only helps employees gain efficiency, but gives employers
insight and training into their own character. Character must first be modeled by
leaders before it can be "caught" by followers. For example, employers often
react to a lack of diligence, responsibility, or punctuality in their employees. But,
employees can react to an employer's lack of sensitivity, truthfulness, or
tolerance. Character training creates a climate of understanding,
communication, and cooperation in the workplace, with employer and employee
working together for the good of the business and for the development and
well-being of the employee.
Character in Business
"Character is a
valuable resource and
Johnson & Johnson
3 Keys to
Require good character
Reward and recognize
Hire on the basis of character. When interviewing, ask questions that look for
specific character traits. For example, say, "Tell me about a time you had to
make a hard choice between your employer's directions and a peer's request."
Fire on the basis of character. A character deficiency is behind every behavior
Educate your employees about character. Hold monthly or weekly meetings to
present new character qualities. Use posters and newsletters to remind
employees of the character quality, creating a "climate of character." Use the
materials on this website freely. Bulletins about each character quality and a
teaching DVD are available each month from www.characterfirst.com.
Evaluate your employees based on character. What character trait would help
them improve the quality of their work?
Give individual employees specific goals to build good character into their
Award good character. Consider giving an award each month to the employee
who has most exemplified the month's character quality.
Design company policies that encourage good character.
Sponsor a company community workday to encourage application of good
How Can You Develop Character in
Would your company be interested in a local seminar with a
consultant trained in developing character in business?
Click here to let the Character Council know of your interest.
Why is character
Enhances quality of work
Creates workplace safety
Makes the employee
valuable to the organization
Why not commit your
organization to be
Your example will
inspire other in your
community to want
to build good
your supervisor is
Do your very best,
even when your
work may not be
Treat others as you
would like to be
of who they are.
When you are
wrong, quickly admit
it and quit it.
Go the extra mile to
make others more
Take care of
--permission to use