Tuesday, July 26, 2011


An encounter with a contractor got me thinking.

I paid off the contract with a perfectly good check and the contractor had accepted a previous check which did not bounce. But the worker who did the work at my house called to say that the boss would prefer cash. Why? I asked. "Between you and me, I think it's because of taxes"


Well we haven't decided whether to go along with that or not. There are some protections to paying by check. At a minimum we would need the check returned and a receipt.

But it got me thinking.

What about honesty? There may be a perfectly legitimate reason for asking for cash so I am not really going to speculate on this particular contractor. But the following story came to mind.

'Gibbo' who shared an office with his boss Gordon Selfridge owner of the world famous store Selfridges.

The phone rang and the Gibbo answered. The caller wanted to speak to Gordon Selfridge. Gibbo asked the caller to hold on and told Gordon who was calling. Gordon said ‘Tell him I’m not here'

Gibbo handed the phone to Gordon and said ‘You tell him you are not here’

Gordon was furious and Gibbo said to his boss ‘I refused because if I can lie FOR you I can lie TO you and I will NEVER lie to you’

From that moment Gibbo was taken into the confidence of the boss and considered a trusted source.

Some other thoughts:

If your boss pays you under the table would you want to be his/her customer or would you worry about being cheated?

If your boss lies to his/her boss can you trust them to be honest with you?

Would love to hear your thoughts!

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