Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Success And Ethics Only Mix One Way

The NYSE Group's chairman wants us to think that career success in a large organization is compatible with high ethical standards of conduct.  I beg to differ.  The massive bonuses paid out to bank executives under TARP are proof of this incompatibility.  Those executives knew their financial sausage factories were selling mortgage backed securities whose valuations could never be supported by underlying property values.  Anyone raising a red ethical flag during that process would have been canned.  Go along to get along, and you'll get rewarded with big bucks.  Sell that garbage quick with big lies and collect that bonus.  Don't worry about the client getting hurt afterwards when "I'll be gone and you'll be gone."

My post's title hints that success and ethics only mix in one way.  That way is self-employment.  When your only boss is your own conscience, no one can order you to falsify documentation or misrepresent an investment product.  Say "thanks, but no thanks" to Wall Street's hucksters when they try to tell you otherwise.