Following the Rules: Training Small Business Owners Better


Your Business Professor was teaching our 5-year-old boy some basketball moves in our backyard court …

Grab a jersey here. Push there. Lean. Scream.

Charmaine looked out the window from her home office. As a Kentucky Wildcats fan, she understands basketball’s contact nature, but she had never heard the narrative, the coaching.

“What are you doing?” she asked me.

“Teaching him how to cheat,” I said as I deftly showed my boy my favorite defensive move: How to gently touch the shooter’s arm without getting caught by the referee.

And I have another motivation. Knowing how to “bend” the rules would be a valuable skill if — more like, when! — he decides to run his own business. I am a forward-thinking father.

“I don’t think I like that.” She was worried about our boy. “Isn’t that how all those Tyco guys got started?”

I stopped to give her argument some consideration.

She’s got me, again, I thought — using logic and reason without incurring any of the Ten Commandments, which govern our faith. Thou shalt not steal, not covet, not bear false witness, etc. and etc. I know this stuff. I teach ethics and do a bit of writing on honest business.

“There is a risk,” I admited. “But it would be the coach’s job to know the degree of the infraction that might result in getting a technical foul called, or –”

“I’m not worried about a penalty box – I’m worried about the penitentiary.”

I protested, “There’s a difference between hockey and the pokey…”

“Sure,” Charmaine said. “You can name your next book, ‘Management Without Prison’.”

Darn. She was on to something. I wondered, “Well, there are very few women incarcerated for white collar crime…”

She said, “Because women don’t cheat.”

I said, “No, because women don’t take risks.”

She said, “Because women respect boundaries.”

I said, “No, because women don’t think outside the box.”

She said, “Women do creative products, creative deals not creative accounting.”

I began to realize that I was getting close to the edge, the abyss, even though I was winning the fight — debate — as I always, always do. Women respect boundaries and just don’t take questionable legal chances. After over two decades of marital (martial?) bliss I know how to end an argument with two words:



Yes, dear.”

Pat Heim, Ph.D., would recognize this friction. She runs workshops on gender differences. And in her book, “Hardball for Women,” she described one of them. She asked the men what lessons they had learned playing team sports:

“How to be a leader,” one said.
“Taking criticism,” said another.
Soon the lessons were flying thick and fast.
“How to lose.”
“Doing what the coach says.”
“Taking a hit.”
“Looking aggressive even if you’re not.”

They had listed about a dozen when three men simultaneously said, “To cheat.”

The women in the group gasped. One of them spoke up. “I’m shocked. What do you mean, to cheat? You’d better explain.” The other females nodded and murmured in unison.

The men, meanwhile, were surprised by the women’s reaction; cheating seemed so obviously part of the game, it was hardly worth discussing. Eventually one participant said, “Whenever the referee, the umpire, the opposition, whoever, turns his back, you get away with what you can. That’s how the game is played.”

But is this the best way to control and influence the customs of commerce? Business as an athletic event? It was as if the financial auditors wore the striped shirts of umpires. Both business and sports are rules bound games…

But games end. Owners should have a long-term focus.

Rieva Lesonsky, is President and Founder of GrowBiz Media, a content and consulting company specializing in covering small businesses and entrepreneurship. She writes in “Does Putting Women in Charge Strengthen Your Business?” that:

“Family business leaders’ ultimate goal is to keep the business going beyond the current generation. That’s why these businesses focus on growth and sustainability, not solely on short-term results.”

Bill Maher, political humorist, once said, “When we disregard the rules altogether we get anarchy or, worse yet, Enron.”

Charmaine reminded me that the road to “financial irregularity” always starts with harmless first steps. Honesty begins with accountability and respect for the game: to answer to a higher authority, to the team, and the written and unwritten codes of conduct. Cheaters never win. Winners never cheat.

I go back to the basketball court with less winking at the rules and more thinking on the game. And so Charmaine kept two males safe inside the limits and respect for the law in sports and business.


Basketball Ref Photo via Shutterstock

405 Comments ▼

Jack Yoest


Jack Yoest John Wesley (Jack) Yoest Jr., is a Clinical Assistant Professor of Management at The Catholic University of America. His expertise is in management training and development, operations, sales, and marketing. Professor Yoest is the president of Management Training of DC, LLC. A former Captain in the U.S. Army and with various stints as a corporate executive, he also served as Assistant Secretary for Health and Human Resources in the Administration of Governor James Gilmore of Virginia.

405 Reactions

  1. Aira Bongco

    Interesting read. Wondering how it applies to the actual training of business owners though. And it is not that easy for they can be quite hardheaded and sometimes refuse to budge with what they are used to doing.

  2. Jack Yoest

    Aira, you are right: Your Business Professor was attempting to go beyond the utilitarian approach to business ethics, that is, “don’t be bad because you will get caught.”

    The theme of “be good” is a bit harder to teach, because the rule bending-breaking small business owner might never be caught being bad. The start of being aware of right and wrong is to be accountable: to Your Creator, or Higher Power or the deity you hold most dear, your community, your business, your family and friends.

    Accountability is a tough sell and that’s why academia and consultants and journalists have such a challenge. Ethics can be so “judgmental” in these troubled times.

    “Honesty is [still] the best policy,” as Benjamin Franklin said.

    Thank you for your comment,
    Jack

  3. I have played in sports as well, and there are a fair share of cheaters. Wrestling is a sport where cheating can result in extreme consequences to yourself and to others. Using illegal moves to cut off a person’s blood flow to the brain, or straining their fingers close to breaking point while the ref is not looking

    The thing is the ref isn’t only one watching the match, the person being hurt is, the people watching and the one above. This can apply to business as the law is not the only one watching. The people around you are watching. Your own ethics in the business world affect the person who you are outside of that.

    Our choices make who we are. Will we choose to be sly or honest. Will we hurt the weak in order to gain an extra advantage. These all are things to account for, is the advantage of cheating worth the long run, not just in life, but is your soul worth losing for it?

    • I have also played sports. In soccer it is very offensive when someone cheats because it can change results drastically and maybe affect the team that is putting all their effort and working as hard as a team to achieve what they want, which is victory. And the cheating team, the one that isn’t giving its best and didn’t train as hard as the other team, gets to win. It is unfair to achieve something “easy” by cheating.

      In business its the same thing, one company wants to grow big and they work hard to achieve their goals, but ofcourse it takes time. But the cheating company gets to their goal faster, but that way they don’t learn anything, because it takes hard work to get somewhere in life. We become who we are by hard work and effort. It is not fair to hurt someone and believe they are something less just because we are not being honest.

    • Matthew Campanella

      Growing up playing Lacrosse in a small town my teammates and I quickly realized how to play differently when a certain referee was officiating our game. We knew the certain tendencies and calls the different referees would make. This gave us an advantage on the other teams. My teammates and I were all good kids and knew the game only lasted a mere 45 minutes and the outcome would have little effect on our lives. That is why we were fine with cheating. We knew the consequences wouldn’t be drastic. As opposed to sports cheating in business (I assume) can have very serious consequences. Even if there were room to cheat in a business situation I could not have the same mind set as an adult business man to cheat then I would as a young boy playing a game. Business decisions are much more long term then a game and should be decided honestly.

  4. Jack Yoest

    Edward, well said. Doing the right thing; taking a moral/ethical approach is a decision. It is not something that happens to us.

    And as you note, “Will we hurt the weak in order to gain an extra advantage.Will we hurt the weak in order to gain an extra advantage.”? Business, indeed, life– is not a sprint with a temporary gain — but a lifetime marathon where we ‘fight the good fight, I have finished the race…’

    Cheers,
    Jack

  5. Through my athletics career I have learned about gamesmanship. Gamesmanship is the polite way to say, “Do whatever it takes to win, but don’t look classless doing it”. This simple word is a way around feeling guilty for being slightly unethical. However, in the sports world a little extra shove while the ref isn’t watching is not the end of the world, but in business it could be.

    Any unethical decision made by any employee at any level reflects upon the company. If one person starts making non business purchases on the company card, or working a few less hours a week than expected– it can have a major domino effect on the whole company.

    I agree with the point that unethical companies or employees tend to be only focused on income, or the current state of the company. Companies with a plan for the future often have a better chance of having a good foundation of leadership and ethics.

    • Analisa,

      I agree with your comment and enjoyed how you analyzed the article. Your statement about how any unethical decision made by any employee at any level reflects upon the company is true, but there is always that one person who breaks all trust and surprises everyone with their true colors and morals. I believe that the companies who play by the rules and plan for the future will definitely have more success over those who cut around the corners and cheat their way to the top. (Remember, cheaters never really win) In the future, I hope see a big change in the business world with more virtuous people in it’s environment.

    • Miss Scott,
      I agree with the idea that you are bringing to the table that there is an undeniable difference between the business world and sports. That being said I think as humans we have an inclination to subconsciously asscosiate right from wrong in all situations throughout our life. Right is right and wrong is wrong. We know that (or think we do) from a very young age. We cannot blur the lines depending on the situation.
      Much love,
      Joe Kelly

      • Joe,

        I think your statement “We cannot blur the lines depending on the situation.” is a shrewd point to make. As I also pointed out in my comment, These actions, no matter the circumstances, have the same root- dishonesty. Business leaders have a responsibility to their consumers and their community to follow ethical business practices and must have a strong moral compass in order to do so. Identifying and recognizing this behavior from the start is the first step in eradicating unethical behavior and building that moral compass.

        Kelly Hickey

  6. The true character of a person is always shown by what they do when they think no one is looking. There are so many unethical practices that occur everyday, but it is our responsibility to do the best we can using our moral and ethical compass. You can go into a business with an open mind, generating positive energy, this brings about the most productivity for the success of the common good. If you bring bad energy into a company, their will be a price to be paid for those choices. Like Edward said, our choices make us who we are and without those choices we do not grow and learn in a constantly changing environment. Teaching business ethics is a must for the future generations, but it can be tough when we see so much success gained by people who do the wrong thing. I am reminded of a quote from Robert Burns saying, “the best laid schemes o’mice and men often go astray”. This shows that there are consequences for our bad actions that might not impact just us, but many others. Having played sports for most of my life, I too have learned from teammates and coaches that the actions of one player can ruin the good of the team. I believe the same is true in all areas of business.

    • Devon,
      I enjoyed your view on the article and perception of how ones character and integrity is formed when no one is looking. Many successful businessman and professional athletes have backed that ideal “Do your best when no one is looking. If you do that then you can be successful in anything you put your kind to.” as stated by Bob Cousy, one of the greatest basketball players ever. Many people think to become of the richest you need to be sneaky, sly, and cheat in some way. That being honest in your business practices will get you to a certain point but in order to surpass that and join the ultra rich some ‘under the table practices’ must occur. I agree that in the end it will most likely hurt your ‘team’ and employees leaving them unemployed or worse…in jail so business ethics is a huge part of business knowledge and something everyone should understand.

  7. Colin Cunningham

    I think the issue is not that people are cheating, but that it is so easy to cheat. In the business world, the government can’t be expected to regulate and babysit each business, big and small. Especially for small businesses, owners can be enticed to bend the rules if it means they can increase profits. A prime example would be from the 2007-2008 housing bubble collapse. Lenders and handing out subprime loans and packaging CDOs that sounded good, but ultimately crashing the market. The business world has limited rewards for being honest.

    • Jack Yoest

      Colin, you are right — it is easy to cheat and even easier to get away with it. This is why businesses demand hiring employees who have good character and integrity — so that the new hires are internally motivated to do the right thing.

      Well Said,
      Jack

      • Professor,

        It is scary that the people questioned with what playing sports taught them began with answering “how to be leaders” and ended with “how to cheat”. If most agree that one of the most valuable skills gained of their experience involves cheating, it’s not too much to assume that this “skill” would carry on in their leadership positions. I am glad that business leaders recognize and honor those employees with true integrity and good character. It provides hope for the next generation of business, with less bending of the rules in the moment and more respect for the long term success of the company, the legal way.

  8. Jack Yoest

    Analisa, you are right, especially on ‘income.’ The purpose of business is to create and delight a customer — profit is the ‘control’ part of management that tells us if we are doing right by the customer.

    And I liked your point, “Any unethical decision made by any employee at any level reflects upon the company…” Unethical behavior by others can be the real challenge in today’s business settings.

    Edmund Burke reminds us that Evil wins when good-guys do nothing. Like the Marketing campaign from Homeland Security advises, “See something? Say something.”

    Cheers,
    Jack

  9. The whole idea of right verse wrong is a very difficult one when dealing with the subjective ideas that make up ethics. I believe we should push the limits of what is accepted in society. After all, we are faster paced and possess more technological innovation than any prior generation. We owe it to society to make the most out of the world we inherit. Obviously we have legal barriers that prevent some advancement, but there are also ethical restraints that we should feel. To not do something that positively impacts oneself, but damages the lives of people around us.

    I believe business has become much more than advancement through legal ideas. Before the lawyers even walk in the door, business leaders should be asking, “is this the right thing to do?”

    Earlier this year I had the opportunity to hear a former CEO of American Century Investment speak about the preservation of ethics in a family business (his father founded American Century many years prior). He spoke largely about how the ethical principals of the company were laid down when the firm was founded. Next, he discussed within the growing firm it became HR’s job to find the right person (not the most qualified) for the job who understood that there is a certain way of doing business there, someone who understood the same ethics that were established when the family business was founded.

  10. Victoria Guerrero

    This is something that I think about all the time and frankly it bothers me. After being a business undergraduate I think about all those companies cutting corners and ultimately damaging the unforetold future possibly destroying someone’s life. This of corse is all done “unintentionally”, just to get ahead and that extra boost. If there’s anything that I dislike more is people disregaurding the harmfulness of “cheating”. Also, I don’t think it’s fair to generalize women as the gender to call out something so obviously wrong. Women shouldn’t be labeled this way since growing up I knew way too many girls who were very okay with cheating. Everyone has a moral compass it’s just a matter of putting it to good use.

    • Jack Yoest

      Victoria, your point is well taken. Please forgive the gender generalization — I was merely following the ancient wisdom of Sophia, portrayed as a female (for wisdom) and Virtue, portrayed as a female (for good) standing over a slain tyrant on the seal and flag of the Commonwealth of Virginia.

      And yes, do have to watch for “mean girls…”

      Thank you for your comment,
      Jack

  11. Playing sports my whole life has taught me a lot of life lessons. One of them being how to bend the rules and knowing when to take advantage of an opportunity, but I don’t think this is the way we should be taught how to learn the game. You start off with fundamentals and enhancing your skills. The best player on the field isn’t going to be the one who can cheat the best. It’s going to be the one with the best mechanics.

    You’re right that there is a risk when it comes to bending the rules or cheating. In sports that risk is getting a penalty called, giving the other team a better chance to score or sometimes all you get is a warning. In Business the risk is much higher. Even though with great risks can come great rewards that does not apply here. Once you start making unethical decisions in business it can affect you or your company very largely.

    The small risks that you take are going to add up and catch up to you and by then it will be to late. In sports maybe you start out with a warning and then a yellow card and maybe eventually you get kicked out of the game. With that being the worst scenario you can still come back and play next game. This one game has not changed your life or put you in jail. Yet that’s what can happen if you start taking risks in business.

    • Jack Yoest

      Molly, you are right–this is why we call competitive sports a “rules-bound games.” Fair play is the best way to measure and compare two teams or businesses.

      Best,
      Jack

  12. Colleen Bringard

    During my field hockey season I had one coach that would say “I want you girls to win. I want you girls to play aggressive, but I never want you girls to disrespect this game because you girls love it as much as I do.” So every game we would play our hardest and do our best. Of course we couldn’t win every game, but in my coaches eyes that fact that we played with class and respect was a win. You can teach anyone how to win, but teaching someone how to win with structure and grace is a respectable way.

    In my internship that I am in currently I have learned that everything must be by the book, because even though out on the field a little shove for intimidation would help. Here in the world of corporate business it will make people not want to work with you, it could even cost you your job, and make the company look bad.

    To win or succeed you have to go by the book and it might be hard, but knowing you did it the proper way is the best feeling.

    • Jack Yoest

      Colleen, what a terrific analogy — trash talking does not work in business because there is a real difference between earning a living and sports.

      In athletics there is only one winner in a game — but in business, wealth and customers can be created with partnerships and in alliances. The pie is not fixed. Markets can grow. There can be multiple winners in the same game.

      Well done,
      Jack

  13. From my experiences in sports, cheating is very much a part of the game. Pushing, shoving and talking smack while the ref isn’t looking is part of the FUN of the game, and showcases the ‘here and now’ aspect of competition. In business in the real world, this is a bit more serious. Sports situations, for the most part, last only as long as the game or match does; after this point the jeering stops and means nothing. In the real world, this parallel doesn’t match. Actions against the rules done behind the face of a business, by an employee, or anyone last forever and can have much more meaningful lasting impacts on a business than in a sports game.

    • Jack Yoest

      Colin, Yes, this testing is the fun of sports — and of business.

      Theologian Dr. Novak quotes Maurice B. Mitchell, in College & University Business (1973),

      “Not enough young men and women who come to a university have ever had a punch in the nose, not enough have ever had a black eye, not enough have ever been involved in contact sports or personal physical combat…I think it would be good for us if we had some of those participant activities where everybody gains a sense of his own physical feelings–what it feels like to hurt a little, what it feels like to get bumped, what it feels like to be able to run faster, or to get caught, or to lose. p. 174.”

      See: http://www.yoest.com/2010/08/14/the_joy_of_sports_by_michael_n/

      Cheers,
      Jack

  14. Samantha Hawkins

    I really enjoyed this article. There is definitely a direct correlation between the way you are taught anything, whether it be basketball or business, and the way you conduct yourself. I am not entirely sure whether gender plays into the scheme of this and whether having women or men in charge makes a difference on ethical decision making, but I was conflicted when reading that all the boys considering cheating to be part of sports and therefore a part of their lives. This promotes negativity, or worse,
    Enron.

    Overall, I really liked the article and thought it was a valuable and stimulating read.

    Thanks!
    Samantha Hawkins

    • Jack Yoest

      Samantha, yes, this gender difference is interesting and we must consider it in business. For example, women do not bluff — there are very few female world champion poker players.

      This can be a challenge in negotiations where a man will walk away and a woman will not — because she will value the relationship.

      Best,
      Jack

  15. Jack Yoest

    Chris B, I think that you are on to something about hiring the right person who will do right. As Jack Welch said-the first characteristic to determine in a job candidate is integrity.

    And testing for character and integrity is possible with today’s software.

    Best,
    Jack

    • Martin Lindeskog

      Jack,

      Have you read the works by Dr. Edwin A. Locke?

      I recommend you to read his book, The Prime Movers: Traits of the Great Wealth Creators.

      • Jack Yoest

        Martin, no I have not yet read his work — I just put The Prime Movers on my wish list — but a used copy costs 45 bucks. (I’m going to try to pull rank as an academic to secure a copy…)

        Thanks for the recommendation,

        Jack

  16. I recently read a book titled “Winners Never Cheat, Even in Difficult Times” by John Huntsman. It speaks a lot about some of the main points of this article. I believe if you do not teach proper ethics than you can start a slipper slope that will dictate your actions for the rest of your life. In every life situation you should strive to be honest and ethical, it shouldn’t matter whether you are scrubbing toilets, playing sports, or running a business.

  17. Ill-gotten gains made by acting in an unethical manner can increase the bottom line in the short term, to be sure. But, as Ken Lay with Enron and Arthur Andersen (a once “Big Eight” accounting firm) found out; the house of cards built on dishonest business practices will eventually fall, and fall hard. As we all know, Lance Armstrong is another example of the affects cheating can have on one’s career.

    • Jack Yoest

      Tim, your comment emphasizes an important point: managers must trust their advisors and auditors — and these counsellors must be worthy of trust — and this is work of the owner and manager — to find trustworthy support staff.

      Cheers,
      Jack

  18. From my experience, and I’m sure the experiences of other’s, cheating is simply a part of sports. However, the teams who consist of high integrity individuals, from the players to the coaching staff, tend to find success more often. This tendency is the same from the lower levels of youth athletics, to the professional level. The reason is because the coaches are more focused on the long term success of their program and players, rather than success attained by a short cut or cheating. This can be translated to business as well. The corporations who run their business in an ethical manner tend to have more long term success. In my opinion, it is the responsibility of the management and executive level employees to ensure that their ethics and strong moral beliefs are being carried out through the corporation.

    All in all, cutting corners and practicing unethical behaviors in business and in sports will not pay off in the long run. It is the one who plays by the book and displays morally correct behavior who will attain perennial success.

  19. Growing up playing sports you are always trying to find an edge on you’re opponent in order to win. If that means taking a little cheap jab at the back of their legs with you’re hockey stick when the ref isn’t looking so be it. But at the same time there are always other people watching when the ref isn’t watching. Although this jab probably hurt you’re opponent in the grand scheme of things it never changed the course of the game. Same thing with buiesness you always want to do what will put you and you’re company infront of other companies. If that means breaking a rule here and there so be it, but at the same time you have to remember that there are always other people watching you’re every move and it could effect the way you’re comnapny looks in the long run. Which is always more important that what something looks in the short run.

  20. The beauty of this article is that it highlights the importance of parenting and our “roots.” So much of who we are and who we become throughout our life has to do with the lessons we learn as children, mostly from our parents. Obviously, there are exceptions to every rule, but I believe that almost every quality, from integrity to hate, is passed from parent to child. In that sense, it a good thing for a child to have different parenting styles in his or her life. A realistic parent combined with an idealistic parent can create a well-balanced child.

    Translating this to business is very simple. As the child grows up, they will realize when it is time to take risks and when it is time to put on the brakes. As long as imagination is checked by rationalization, and vice versa, a person can become a very successful individual. This success will come through positive business ventures and in their personal lives. Ultimately, we all must know when to push the boundaries and even know when to cross them when necessary. I believe that this knowledge comes from our parents and their guidance throughout our lives.

    • Jack Yoest

      Luke, this is true, we learn virtue from our upbringing and this continuous learning is reinforces with mentors and teachers over our careers.

      We cannot pick our parents but we can control who and where we study.

      Jack

  21. I think business and sports can both be looked at metaphorically to one’s life, simply in a smaller microcosm. Everything in one’s life is made equal to others through one constant, that constant being time. Meaning that time is the same for the richest and poorest men in the world. Due to this constant, both are also given the opportunity to cheat, which removes the unfair advantage of cheating. Business and sports also have an equalizer, being the minimalistic aspect of them both. Sports in particular you are thrown out on a field and it is just you and nobody else behind the scenes that can help you. That is how it should be, if you are finding a way to have the game altered by a third party, i.e. “Deflategate,” then you are a cheater and a coward. However, if you are preparing yourself in a way that some are unwilling to do and it is seen as cheating, that is up in the air. Same goes for business, if you are receiving help from an individual that another business man or woman does not have the opportunities to reach out to, then that can be seen as cheating. However, once all opportunities are equalized, cheating goes out the window once it is accessible by all.

  22. Jack Yoest

    Andrew, you make a good connection between sports and business. And you are right — any short term gain by cutting corners is not worth it in a continuing relationship.

    Best,
    Jack

  23. Jack Yoest

    Devon, you are so right: the actions of a few can brand the entire team — a bad apple can spoil a bushel.

    As you note — peer pressure and the influence of the manager/coach can help limit temptations.

    Cheers,
    Jack

  24. I often compare business to athletics as this article demonstrated. Having been a swimmer my entire life I know how competitive one can be within a team and with other teams. Business tends to have the same competitive nature within a company and with other companies. I think this article pinpoints a heated debate about where lines should be drawn when it comes to cheating a system to pull ahead. I believe cheating is not right and ultimately means someone should work harder to achieve his or her goal versus taking the easy way out. The business world is a tough place, but I think if one remains moral and ethical they have a greater chance to succeed. I liked what Sean Dempsey commented above about how someone is always watching and how that can affect a company or persons reputation. In sports it is easy to throw a quick jab when a ref is not looking because the game is only a brief period of time, but a career lasts much longer than an hour and cheating the system can have much greater consequences in the future. I also thought the article shined a light on another issue in the business field, gender stereotypes. I do believe men tend to be greater risk takers, but they do this because they do not look at the overall picture that women do. There is a difference between taking risks and cheating the system. I think that gender stereotypes are a huge problem in the business field for not only women, but men too. Overall, I thought this article was a interesting read and allowed me to think about where the line should be drawn about cheating.

    • Jack Yoest

      Kallie, good comment on the conflict and reminding that someone is always watching.

      Dr. Michael Novak details this in his book, “The Joy of Sports.” He quotes Jacques Barzun, “Whoever wants to know the heart and mind of America had better learn baseball.” p.1.

      Novak goes further,

      “Athletic achievement, like the achievements of the heroes and gods of Greece, is the momentary attainment of perfect form–as though there were, hidden away from mortal eyes, a perfect way to execute a play, and suddenly a player or a team has found it and sneaked a demonstration down to earth. A great play is a revelation. The curtains of ordinary life part, and perfection flashes for an instant before the eye. p.5.”

      Novak continues transcendent,

      “To keep cool, to handle hundreds of details and call exactly the plays that work, to fights one’s way through opposition to do what one wills to do, against odds, against probabilities–these are to practice a very high art, to achieve a few moments of beauty that will delight the memory of those who watched, or listened, or read, for all their lives. What we mean by “[sports] legend” is what we mean by “art”: the reaching of a form, a perfection, which ordinarily the flesh masks, a form eternal in its beauty. It is as though muscle and nerves and spirit and comrades were working together as flawlessly as God once imagined human beings might. p.16-17″

      Cheers,
      Jack

  25. Having played sports my whole life I have seen a direct correlation between a person’s morals and character to how they compete in a game setting. Each player is taught the fundamentals when they begin the sport which creates a good player. A great player is made by using their own personal competitive drive, which often times is not taught, combined with the fundamentals of the game. An individual’s aim to be the best can cause them to throw an elbow or shove a player on the court when they are caught up in the moment. Their goal is not to specifically hurt the opponent (in some cases) but rather to give themselves the leg up while the opponent looses focus. However, there is a big difference between focusing all your energy on playing to your highest potential and focusing on how you will set back your opponent in a way that is prohibited in the rule book.

    A related quote is “The best offense is a good defense” which can translate into the business world for business both big and small. If a business focuses on how they will improve to be the top competitor in their field then to bring them down they would have to go down to the other parties level. Cheating and cutting corners would brand the companies name if caught and that itself could destroy a company that has been “taught the fundamentals” and built on good morals.

    • Jack Yoest

      Erin, I think you are right — a cheat on the field is a cheat off the field.

      Michael Novak expands this,

      “The basic reality of all human life is play, games, sport; these are the realities form which the basic metaphors for all that is important in the rest of life are drawn. Work, politics, and history are the illusory, misleading, false world.” p. xii

      “Being, beauty, truth, excellence, transcendence–these words, grown in the soil of play, wither in the sand of work. Art, prayer, worship, love, civilization: these thrive in the field of play.” p. xii

      Good comment,
      Jack

  26. Playing sports for a majority of my life I have been faced with cheaters in every level, from intramural to varsity sports. Cheating has become more accepted as people progress in their life and many have turned a blind eye towards cheating in game like situations. Many people have been taught that to get ahead in life they need to cheat. Treating a business as a game like situation allows for the owners and workers of said business to try and outsmart and “win” against their other opponents by cheating and using tactics that are outside of the guidelines. Teaching cheating at a young age can help the kids try and one up their opponents in games by a simple shove or jab when the ref isn’t looking but as they grow older it becomes a more serious act when they are put in the real business world and try to help their business rise to the top. By trying to set your business above others, many forget what their business is all about but more focus on being the winner out of all the others.

    • Jack Yoest

      Emily, you are right. Most everyone on a team or in a business knows who the “cheaters” are and simply say nothing.

      It often takes courage to standup and call-out the rule bending.

      Best,
      Jack

  27. As I began reading this article, I was shocked by the concept of a father teaching his son the “valuable” skill on how to “bend” the rules of the game. After rethinking my athletic career, I realized that this concept may not be too far off. As sports become more competitive, I have experienced, more so coaches, than parents, teaching the skill of gamesmanship. Gamesmanship is not directly cheating, rather it is playing through a foul that the ref did not see, or recognizing the fouls the referee is not calling and capitalizing on those illegal skills. Although this may seem like a minor act, when it is translated into the business world, we see a major issue. For instance, if one company is to recognize that the government is not monitoring a sector of their company, than what is it to say that other companies will not also recognize this trend and begin to capitalize on it also. The end result of these illegal actions could cost the company their ethical reputation and much more. Overall, I believe that although it may be tempting to cut corners, one must be willing to protect both the integrity and character of themselves and the company, as “Cheaters never win and winners never cheat.”

    • Jack Yoest

      Morgan, good observations — merely because the referee did not see (or call) an infraction does not mean all parties are innocent — maybe “not guilty…” But–

      We demonstrate integrity when we avoid even the appearance of wrong doing.

      And this is what we look for in business and life first — integrity. “Everything else we can buy by the yard…” as one sage said.

      Cheers,
      Jack

  28. Brigitte Zschech

    I would like to focus on the section that referred to creativity versus risk. Although you must be creative to cheat you do not have to cheat to be creative. I believe that in business, as well as sport, if you have enough drive to perfect your skills and then apply a creative nature to it, then the need to cheat is rendered unnecessary. What I mean by this is that in business, you can possess the knowledge of how to run a successful business and also along the way learn of ways to get ahead with minimal effort by using unethical or illegal means. Creativity however could be a way to obtain the same result without the misuse of means. I believe that risk is when the outcome is unknown but in order to attempt a creative plan, the unknown is necessary and therefore the risk is worth taking. If cheating is seen as a risk, then it is that leader or player’s creative process that is need of adjustment.

    • Jack Yoest

      Bridgette,

      You have a point: real creativity looks like someone is bending or breaking the rules. But let us keep in mind the bright line of working within the boundaries and breaking the law.

      “Tax avoidance” is legal.

      “Tax evasion” is not.

      Good comment,
      Jack

  29. I am always in favor of pushing the boundaries in order to “change the game”. While it is important to remember that cheating in its very essence is wrong, rules are made to be broken. If people in history never broke the rules- or pushed the boundaries of social norms- America could very well still be run by tyrants. If we apply this to business, rules must be broken and cheating must occur to shed light on what “rules” need to be reexamined and reevaluated to ensure that the foul play does not occur again. Its a simple concept. Break the rules, learn from your mistake, do not break that rule again. Cheating and rule breaking are wrong, but they’re necessary for true, natural growth in life and in business.

    • Jack Yoest

      Brendan, Let us be sure that rules that might be challenged are done within the boundaries of the law.

      Breaking new ground in marketing is a bit different than breaking a law which could lead to a criminal investigation.

      Best,
      Jack

  30. The part of the article that caught my attention is the following: “And I have another motivation. Knowing how to ‘bend’ the rules would be a valuable skill if — more like, when! — he decides to run his own business. I am a forward-thinking father.”

    As an athlete, I can speak for most in saying that we all want to win, and that we all will do anything to win. However, you don’t need to “bend” the rules in order to win. Most people who bend the rules, are the ones who find themselves at a disadvantage compared to everyone else. Rather than bending the rules one should work harder and sharpen their skills to the point where “bending” the rules is not worth it to the individual anymore.

    My main point is that rather than the father teaching his son how to “bend” the rules, he should be teaching his son skills that will help him succeed within the rules. Whether that be in the business world or in a sports environment.

    • Jack Yoest

      Zack, I think your point was emphasized at the end of the story where Charmaine was able to remind this male to color within the lines.

      Cheers,
      Jack

    • Zack, I absolutely agree you. The father should teach his son how to achieve by working himself to be stronger within the rules and not weaken himself to find a way to “bend” the rules.

      As a child, I was taught to play by the rules. To think for a second to disobey the rules whether its playing a sport or Business Management I believe is a disgrace. Disobeying the rules to better your outcome will only benefit you short term. Its better to say you’ve accomplished something because you worked hard to achieve it than to live with guilt that you’ve accomplished something due to cheating.

  31. I thought this article was very interesting, as an athlete and a man of business I can relate to this sadly. I work for a construction company and I see this happen a lot. Not only that men take different views on women sometimes, but when some men work they intend to cut corners. I just wonder why they would do this, it affects the job in a negative way and maybe someone may get hurt. during the way. I think they may work slow or not efficient because they want to get paid more. I also see it in the athletic aspect too. I see some of teammates cutting corners like not finishing the workout or not giving their 100% on plays. I do understand that people do not want to loose, but if you cheat the game to win I believe they deserve to loose.

    My Dad once told me that if you stick with something and give it your all and not cheat, you will go far in life.
    I believe that business owners should open their eyes up a little more to see the big picture and try to prevents these cheating games from continuing on.

  32. I think it’s crazy to hear about all of the “drama” on the news about people cheating and lying their way through life just to make a quick buck. That is why I’m glad one of CUA’s quotes is “Business is a noble vocation”- Pope Francis. This world seems to need more honest people putting in a good days work rather than people manipulating the system for their own financial gain. This story reminds me of the super-intendant of my high school that took 37 million dollars of funding (That is the number in speculation. The real amount was never publicly released) and put it into another account with out telling anyone. Although, She did not technically steal the money because it was all there. She told no one about this “rainy-day” fund that she had set up for our schools. Must be a pretty expensive rainy day if you ask me!

  33. I think the main concept of when it comes to cheating is that it is done so frequently and so many businesses and people get away with it, that it could almost be considered “the norm.” A prime example of this was right after Superstorm Sandy. Businesses in my area got affected terribly by the storm. By the next day, buildings were burnt down and as everyone knows, fire insurance covers everything, as flood insurance covers only what was destroyed. The businesses knew that they would have to rebuild and start from scratch, so they figured they might as well keep as much money as they could and take the easy way out. It’s mind blowing to see the level of extent that people and companies are willing to go, just to make sure that they are the ones that have the money in their pockets and are satisfied. It tells you a lot about the business world when cheating and cutting corners is the only way that these companies know how to make profits.

  34. I found this article very interesting. I’m not the greatest sports player, but I always enjoy the team aspect and the sportsmanship that goes along with it. Unfortunately, there always seems to be the players that just play to win and they do not care how they win whether they cheat or not. Instead of playing the sport for fun, learning how to work together, or discovering something new about yourself, the game becomes all about being the best and getting the most money. This is the same in the business world and basically any job you do, if you go through life throwing honestly out the window and trying to take the easy way out. It is easier the cheat your way to the top but your life will never become rewarding. You can get in trouble by cheating but you can never get in trouble by working hard and doing the right thing.

  35. Jack Yoest

    Meagan, your comment reminds me of the old joke,

    “What is the number one cause of house fires?”

    “Insurance…”

    Unfortunately stealing or unjust enrichment was nearly a risk-free crime during that natural disaster. But it was stealing never-the-less.

    The ultimate rule is, “Thou shall not steal…”

    Well said,
    Jack

  36. As I’ve grown up there’s always been one thing that’s constant in my life’s, sports. From a young age the life lessons that sports emits correlated effectively with me. Lessons such as the ones provided in the article are some that I can relate to. However, one I cannot say I was taught playing sports is knowing how to cheat. I was always taught how to do things the right way and I have carried that value off the field and into reality. I certainly intend to carry these principles learned from sports when I begin my journey into the business world.

    • Jack Yoest

      Steven, You are right: sports is a proxy for business behavior.

      Philosopher Michael Novak, writes in the Joy of Sports,

      “Religions are built upon ascesis, a word that derives from the disciplines Greek athletes imposed upon themselves to give their wills an instincts command of their bodies; the word was borrowed by Christian monks and hermits.” p. 29 Hence “ascetic.”

      “Sports are the high point of civilization–along with the arts, but more powerfully than the arts…” p. 42.

      “The heart of human reality is courage, honesty, freedom, community, excellence: the heart is sports.” p. 42″

      I have never met a person who disliked sports…who did not at the same time seem to me deficient in humanity. I don’t mean only that all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy, or Jill a dull ms. I mean that a quality of sensitivity, an organ of perception, an access to certain significant truths appear to be missing. Such persons seem to me a danger to civilization. I do not, on the whole, like to work with them. In their presence, I find myself on guard, often unconsciously. I expect from them a certain softness of mind, from their not having known a sufficient number of defeats. Unless they have compensated for it elsewhere, I anticipate that they will underestimate the practice and discipline required for execution, or the role of chance and Fate in human outcomes. I expect them to have a view of the world far too rational and mechanical. p. 44.”

      See http://www.yoest.com/2010/08/14/the_joy_of_sports_by_michael_n/

      Cheers,
      Jack

  37. Matthew Schargel

    I think the analogy of sports is fitting for business. Both share competitive nature, drive for improvement and the idea of winners and losers. My main take away is that it is important to create a foundation of ethics in business to create a successful environment of integrity. Additionally, I found the statement, “ Cheaters never win. Winners never cheat,” quite thought provoking. I immediately thought of sports, specifically the steroid scandal in baseball. Many of the players who “cheated” ended up being very “successful”, for example Barry Bonds. However, his legacy is marked with one big asterisk. This raises the question if cheaters, deemed successful, are considered winners at the end of the day. This is a question I look forward to exploring more this fall.

    • Jack Yoest

      Matthew, A very good analysis. “Integrity” is the first characteristic the small business owner and hiring manager looks for.

      And that’s why sports is a proxy for virtue in business. If one will cheat in sports, s/he will cheat in anything else.

      I like to hear stories about the “integrity of the game” from job candidates. This covers more than a particular field of play.

      Well Done,
      Jack

  38. I was on the rowing team in high school, and for us it was a little different. We never learned how to “cheat” strategically. We were never taught complex strategies, because in reality we had no control over the direction we were going in, or what the other boats were doing. All we could do was trust in the coxswain that we were going the right way, and push as hard as we could. We couldn’t worry about what the other rowers were doing. All we could do was focus on timing and power. Crew is unique that way, in that you have to work together and become one unified machine if you want to get ahead. If someone even tries to cheat somehow, the whole boat suffers.

    Sadly I think that in most sports cheating is a strategy used to get ahead, and it does carry through into business, however whenever a person tries to cheat, at some point someone will find out, and the consequences do not just effect the perpetrator. In the business world if a person commits fraud, or if they cheat in some other way that may “not be so bad”, it doesn’t just show that worker to be untrustworthy. It will turn both current, and potential customers away.

    I completely agree with “honesty is the best policy” because it is also the most trustworthy policy.

    • Jack Yoest

      Emily, As you, the Alert Reader, might imagine I have a bias towards athletes, actors and account managers — that is to say: sports, stage and sales. The results are measureable, and measured on a public scoreboard.

      Crew is indeed a team sport with little room for slackers. During a regatta there is no doubt that everyone is pulling.

      But I would submit that any cheating to be seen might show up in practice where a lazy or tired rower might ‘paddle’ and not pull one’s weight. The others in the skull can feel this, as you know.

      This is why coaches like ‘seat-racing’ in crew to identify the fastest combinations of rowers. And single skulling: there is no large organization to hide in.

      Good analogy,

      Jack

  39. This article was very interesting. What I found interesting was the comparison of sports and business as well as men and women of the business world. As sports has always been a part of my family, I have taken my brother to many sport practices and games where the idea of learning how to cheat and manipulate the other player is a part of learning the game.

    In the business world, this is something that is often seen as many people want to do whatever they can to make money and make the company look good. However, what is often forgotten in sports and business is that eventually you do get caught. Integrity is major in everything you do especially when no one is looking. The integrity of men and women in the business world was also an interesting comparison because I do agree that men and women run businesses a little differently.

    I believe when some women uphold high positions in a business they are more likely to go by book because some women understand the stereotypes that women get in business and they do not want to give anyone the chance to question their qualification. But, then again it could be that some women running businesses are better at cheating and manipulating have yet to get caught. Regardless, a cheater won’t get far and the credibility of the person will always be in question.

    • Jack Yoest

      Carmisha, I think you are on to something–the community will always whisper and never quite trust those who are unjustly enriched. And this works in the opposite way for the man or woman of integrity.

      Voltaire, the French philosopher and a contemporary of Thomas Jefferson, detested Christianity. But he insisted on hiring only those men of strong faith.

      He hated those who went to church. But he put them on his payroll.

      He wanted his baker, his tailor and even his wife to be God-fearing believers.

      Why?

      Voltaire, explained, “So that I will be cheated and cuckolded less often…”

      Well Done,
      Jack

  40. This is an interesting and well written article. I believe that Sports and businesses share similarities in that they both incentivize deception or cheating. In baseball many players have been busted using steroids or pine tar to enhance their performances. The MLB bans these substances, but players will still discreetly use them to try and gain an edge. Businesses, like players, also have an incentive to cheat. For example, if oligopolies collude to set the price at one level, they have a strong incentive to “cheat” and lower the agreed price for their own gain. In any competition, the participants will seek for an edge, some will go against the rules to do so.

  41. This article was very interesting in the way that two different points of views are shown. From wrong and right, but what was most interesting was that there are two ways that everything is seen in life. I have played tennis for a while and one thing that I have always been taught is that first what is important is to have fun and play by the rules. When you cheat you aren’t really winning. It seems that way to the people, but deep inside the player will know that they won because they cheated. So in that case what, is more important winning for the people or winning because you worked hard to accomplish it.

    Also, I found it very interesting the comparison between cheating from men and women perspective. Men seem to find it as a have/must if you have the chance while women saw it as a bad thing. I don’t think it has to do with gender, but mind set. For example, if a team is always the type to win and they have fans because of this reason they do not want to look bad. So this must create intensity in losing a game. All this pressure is put on the players that they must find the easy way out because winning no matter what is important.

    When this comes to business I believe that no matter what there is a consequence to cheating and not doing a business correctly. Once people find out you lose their trust and money. That is how things work if the consumer is not satisfied they will find someone that will. It is better to do things right and have consumers that can bring other consumers. This means you make more money in the long run. Plus everything that is right will flourish to the best at the end.

    • Jack Yoest

      Hally, the gender difference is a generalization — but is supported by the literature on male/female “truthiness.” Simply look at the ratio of men to women who are incarcerated…

      Note in this video clip from Sunshine Cleaning Company. This may be an example of art imitating life: The Dad (male) is encouraging the cheating — the daughter (female) is concerned.

      https://youtu.be/iLraezeCwuQ

      Cheers,
      Jack

  42. I myself have played a number of different sports team, all in one way or another, pretty physical sports. I never remember a coach telling or showing me any ways on how to gain an advantage on an opponent through cheating. Now some people may not believe there is a direct correlation between the kind of cheating applied to sports as the kind applied to the business world through fraud and malpractice, but I do believe in the correlation. Cheating in sports, is usually driven by an immense desire to win or competitiveness, and although usually done in a mild manner, can lead one to the belief that cheating is alright as long as you don’t get caught. The more people follow these beliefs, the higher the possibility they will continue to cheat with more severity and risk later in life. That being said, I think it is necessary to target cheating and any other unethical practices done by younger kids to ensure that they don’t continue those actions once they enter the business world.

    • Jack Yoest

      Carlos, as you imply, ethics needs to be taught at a young age to establish the habit of doing good.

      And to avoid the slow, incremental progression from good to bad.

      Best,
      Jack

  43. As many of the above comments have suggested, there is an undeniable correlation amongst athletes and the culture of business – competition. Children develop their morality and ethics based on the principles witnessed from their surrounding environments, and for the majority of youth today they are influenced greatly by their peers, especially those involving team activities. Among these events there is a common goal, or a “game to win” per say that promotes the child to look past sportsman-like behavior and discover the bad habit of cheating. The problem with one bad habit is their likeliness to multiply and its ability to cloud one’s judgment as they develop into adulthood. In today’s society people strive for success in different areas and whether it be money, beauty, or power that drive to win may outweigh the morals and ethics that once stood. Considering the article’s urge to question where poor business behavior originated I would like to suggest that although I do not agree with them, perhaps these actions are inevitable. However, if society were able to realistically look at the term “success” maybe we may see some different conclusion in the world of business.

  44. First and foremost: Even as a woman I disagree with the ideology and thinking that “women make for better business leaders” based on their greater family values and lack of “cheating”, because gender does not account for discredibility and lack of morals.

    Second: Now a days there are many “successful” businesses that are labeled as corrupt/cheaters/etc. BUT, as profitable as these businesses may currently be I do not believe that they are truly successful. The article states, “Honesty begins with accountability and respect for the game: to answer to a higher authority, to the team, and the written and unwritten codes of conduct. Cheaters never win. Winners never cheat.” So, as these corrupt businesses may appear to be successful, they are constantly in danger/constantly have their whole companies at stake because the path to their “success” is morally…and most likely legally unjustified. Their high risk factor proves that “Cheaters never win and winners never cheat”.

    • Jack Yoest

      Brenna, you are right — businesses can appear to be successful but is not as seen in Enron and Tyco — the variable is the people:

      Do you trust the owners and managers?

      Cheers,
      Jack

  45. The comparison between sports and business makes comparing the two very relatable. Just because something in the current situation seems to make something better, does not always mean it is going to be beneficial in the long run.

    • Jack Yoest

      Emily, you are right — a sports event and business have end times — as in “Who’s winning at the end of the quarter?”

      But even winning a game is not enough — Jack Welch writes of firing a top performer because the superstar didn’t share the values that Welch had as his team’s core competence.

      Jack

  46. Watching and playing sports as much as I do in my life, I can agree with this article in the fact that it says that men do try to take advantage MORE than women do, but I have known women who are just as serious about sports who will take advantage to try to win a game. Business can have an analogy to sports, but I believe that anyone can become a business leader at any time and not just women as it basically states in the article. The way I see it there is good and bad of everything in the world and just because here guys said they cheat to win doesn’t mean they are all bad it means the individual group is bad. I believe that women overall are more honest people than men are, but there are also a lot of men who would make better business leaders than women that don’t cheat. I agree with the fact that you can’t cheat to win, but I guarantee there are women out there that cheat just as well as men do. Business and sports do have a common ground as you can’t cheat to win and I believe that you need to learn about this if you are going to be a business major because you cannot avoid cheating in business as it will always catch up to you as this will in sports.

    • Jack Yoest

      Robert, you are right about both men and women cheating — the first step is to recognize that virtue and vice both exist and that we are all capable of succumbing to the temptation to do evil.

      Jack

  47. Great short story to read. I find it disheartening that cheaters exist in the business world too. To me the cheater is a cheater because that is what his role model taught him. In this case it is because the coach allowed him to do it or taught him to do it. Integrity should not be taught because of your religion or ethics class. Every human should be taught to never cheat as a basic human principle all the way back to moment we were born. Part of the ugly truth is that cheaters sometimes do win, but in a different way. A cheater can’t cheat himself. I believe that it is all about self respect and the image you leave behind. The bad part of being a cheater isn’t that you will know that your a cheater because some people can deal with that. The bad part is that the person who will remember you the most was that opponent who you cheated out of a victory. That opponent won’t speak of how a good competition you were and how you defeated him. You will forever be remembered as the cheater. However, the most disappointing thing about cheating is that today cheating is seen as a brave man’s action. I have witnessed how some one says that cheating should be valued because it is a risk and a thinking out side of the box strategy. How can you call someone who breaks the rules to get an unfair advantage over the competition brave? The true definition of a cheater to me is a coward because he wasn’t brave enough to win the hard way. He is a coward because he took down the person who fought to be on top the way it was meant to be.

  48. Jack Yoest

    Gabriel, an outstanding point– evil — or an injustice — will continue as long as good men (or women) do nothing, apologies to Edmund Burke…

    A true demonstration of virtue in the younger sports games (or maybe even the pros) would be if the coach who got a favorable ruling on the field — that was wrong — would side with the opposing coach to challenge the umpire’s ruling. For the love and purity of the game.

    I don’t know if I’ve ever seen this with five child-athletes and three in D1. But it would be a memorable sight to behold, as you suggest.

    Cheers,
    Jack

  49. I find it interesting to see how people go about their pursuit of success, it can tell a lot about a person no matter what they are trying to achieve as people tend to use their own standards and morals to all things, for example; if an athlete cheats on the field behind the refferee’s back- then they will cheat on homework and tests and find nothing wrong with doing so. As an athlete, I see people cheat, it is part of the game. However, if you get away with it, its benefit is short and does not usually mean much to the outcome of the game and if you get caught, it is usually a penalty which can be a huge let down for your team. This is why I do not understand the point. Cheating can hurt you more than it can help. In the world of business, cheating can make you a quick buck- Great! But it can also send you to prison.

    • Jack Yoest

      Mike, you are right, sports and sportsmanship is a proxy for ethical behavior in business.

      The best indication of future behavior, future performance — is past behavior.

      And if there is cheating in one part of one’s life it is likely to carry over into other parts.

      Well said,
      Jack

  50. Emmelyn Chapilliquen

    This article was very interesting on how it connected sports with business which is highly true in my view point because a business is run by team players if you will and like sports ,businesses tend to “bend” the rules when the “referees” turn their back on them in order to win the game or in this case have a higher profit or gain success. I don’t believe women are the best for running a business more so then men because I’ve seen many great men run successful companies without cheating or foul play to climb to the top but it is sadly true that now a days business owners tend to not follow protocol and aim for a faster but negative way in order to get to the top. I must say though that men do tend to take more risky choices than women and that can either doom or pull a business up depending on the situation. I do believe it’s easy to cheat when you are in a business since their are significant lope holes just like in sports but in the long-run I believe that businesses who do cheat tend to fail more so than those who don’t and I have seen a first hand account on how a company who cheats crumples when they called out.

    • Jack Yoest

      Emmelyn, You are right — it is unfortunate that many people feel the need to cheat in business or in sports where they would never cheat In Real Life.

      In football it is not uncommon to see a late-hit that the referee missed. We don’t see this much in life off the field. (OK, maybe in Road Rage…)

      Best,
      Jack

    • I agree with Emmelyn Chapilliquen, men tend to be better business people than women because of their different mindsets. Women sometimes have too much of a motherly instinct which can make a business deal a little more personal. Whereas men, play the game hard in order to have a successful business. I do believe like Emmelyn, that men do take more risks than women. Women tend to overly think which leads them to not take action. They sometimes get discourage of what they do not have. On the other hand, men know what their capabilities are, use their imagination a little more freely, and do whatever it takes to get ahead. With this being said though, men tend to have more of a temptation to cheat within business than women. It all depends if that man’s conscience eats him enough to not cheat.

  51. Darn. She was on to something. I wondered, “Well, there are very few women incarcerated for white collar crime…”
    She said, “Because women don’t cheat.”
    I said, “No, because women don’t take risks.”
    She said, “Because women respect boundaries.”
    I said, “No, because women don’t think outside the box.”
    She said, “Women do creative products, creative deals not creative accounting.”

    I think that this part of your conversation with Charmaine is the most interesting because it highlights women’s role in the workplace. I feel that since the shattering of the glass ceiling women have been able to rise to the ranks of men in the workplace. It’s a really interesting point that women have a more laid back role in the workplace than men. Despite being “equal” to men in terms of rank they are less likely to take risks because they have more to loose. Men are willing to put themselves out there because they are looking to make a name for themselves. While women are more cautious about the decisions that they make because they have more to loose in terms of their family and social life. Men can get in trouble, got to jail, and recover while women face the repercussions for the rest of their lives. Women that face time behind bars are not viewed the same as men who serve time.

    Thank you for bringing up this incredibly interesting role reversal. While i found the entire article interesting to read I felt that this was the part that struck home for me as a women in the business industry.

  52. Jack Yoest

    Bridget, you are right: women are held to higher standards than men. (As one wag said, “That’s still a low bar to clear…)

    Other experts cite the fact that women often act as ‘canaries in a coal mine’ as early warning alarms when the company (usually run by men) begins to get off track.

    Well Done,
    Jack

  53. Interesting idea on honest business and men. Men are oftentimes too interested in their bragging rights and what they can accomplish rather than their honor and conscience. Guys would rather win a game and get to say “I won, I did it.” instead of saying, “I lost, but I played honestly and tried my best.” There’s one place where I have seen this practice being so prevalent and that is in New England boarding school squash matches. Honest kids who are aggressive are the best players because the referees(one teammate and one opposing team member) see that he is a gentleman on the squash court and will favor him when it comes time to make a call. Dishonest players, even if they are some of the most talented players, will loose a call because the refs see he is dishonest. When push comes to shove and you’re at the mercy of a referee, a judicial court, or God, it will be the honest man who wins in the end.

  54. Jack Yoest

    Frank, you are on to something about the subjective nature of human judges. The referees or auditors in business will examine the facts and the law — the rules, but will also consider the intent of the players.

    This is sportsmanship and is often appreciated on and off the field of play.

    Cheers,
    Jack

  55. The article emphasizes something that I completely support. The idea that cheaters never win and that true success can only be led by a fair played game or true respect for your business and colleagues. I can mostly relate to the importance of honesty in the aspect of sports because of my experience as a soccer player. Luckily, I have always been trained by coaches who never failed to teach my teammates and I the importance of integrity and the morals of true sportsmanship. With that foundation I was able to not only succeed fairly on the field but also in my studies and even during my first encounters with the business world. Most importantly, even though I have failed at times, I have never felt guilt which i believe has allowed me to try harder and eventually succeed with the help of hard work. Lastly, the fundamental rules of a fair game have allowed me to genuinely celebrate my times of success which I would find hard to do if I did not work for it fairly.

    • Jack Yoest

      Ana, your comment calls to mind some quotes from the Theologian, Michael Novak,

      Novak quotes Jacques Barzun, “Whoever wants to know the heart and mind of America had better learn baseball.” p.1.

      Athletic achievement, like the achievements of the heroes and gods of Greece, is the momentary attainment of perfect form–as though there were, hidden away from mortal eyes, a perfect way to execute a play, and suddenly a player or a team has found it and sneaked a demonstration down to earth. A great play is a revelation. The curtains of ordinary life part, and perfection flashes for an instant before the eye. p.5.
      Novak continues transcendent,

      To keep cool, to handle hundreds of details and call exactly the plays that work, to fights one’s way through opposition to do what one wills to do, against odds, against probabilities–these are to practice a very high art, to achieve a few moments of beauty that will delight the memory of those who watched, or listened, or read, for all their lives. What we mean by “[sports] legend” is what we mean by “art”: the reaching of a form, a perfection, which ordinarily the flesh masks, a form eternal in its beauty. It is as though muscle and nerves and spirit and comrades were working together as flawlessly as God once imagined human beings might. p.16-17
      “Sports are religious in the sense that they are organized institutions, disciplines, and liturgies; and also in the sense that they teach religious qualities of heart and soul…they recreate symbols of cosmic struggle, in which human survival and moral courage are not assured.” p. 21

      http://www.yoest.com/2010/08/14/the_joy_of_sports_by_michael_n/

      Cheers,
      Jack

  56. I like how the article shows that cheating is not even the most efficient way to be successful, whether it is in sports or business. I agree that cheating will often times be more harmful in the business world, which is why it is much smarter to approach business in an ethical manner.

    • Jack Yoest

      Mark, you are right — cheating and taking short cuts is a near-term near-sighted approach — there might be a quick “win” today and jail tomorrow.

      Even if your ethics is utilitarian, any short-term gain is never worth the long-term penalty.

      Best,
      Jack

  57. “Winners never cheat, and cheaters never win.” I believe this perfectly sums up the sports world, as well as the business world.
    When it comes to sports, people see winning in terms of game wins instead of losses and championship titles. I believe winning is much more than that. Winning is becoming better at your sport. It is being the best you can be and performing to the best of your ability. Take basketball for example. If you decide to cheat and foul an opponent behind the referee’s back, you may win the game because they cannot score the winning basket. But are you really winning? The W may look great in the score book, but you are putting your effort into cheating instead of becoming the best player that you can be. By doing so, you are only hurting yourself. You are not truly winning.
    In the business world, there are so many situations where taking the easy way out, like cheating in basketball by fouling, may look more appealing. However, business is not all about winning in terms of numbers. That is a short-term goal. Winning should be more about the long-term, making your company the best it can be.

    • Jack Yoest

      Tayler, you are right — sports is a zero sum game — one winner; one lose. But in small businesses we can have many winners and create customers and all earn a decent income.

      Cheers,
      Jack

  58. Christina Breisler

    This article subtly demonstrates how healthy competition can impact the business (or sports) world. Without it, successes and failures would not exist. There would be no technical or medical advancements, and companies would not innovate. In order for society to function, there must be competition. However, with great success (or fear of failure) comes the desire to achieve more, and to attain greater profit. Practices like “creative accounting” may be utilized. This crosses a line when personal and company ethics are sacrificed for selfish gain, and is not “true” achievement. In the short run, there might be some perceived success, but long-term, it never pays off.

  59. Jack Yoest

    Christina, you are right: “Practices like “creative accounting” may be utilized. This crosses a line when personal and company ethics are sacrificed for selfish gain, and is not “true” achievement.”

    Cheating does not reveal true achievement.

    Cheers,
    Jack

  60. The article reminds me of “Business Sustainability”, in which the business integrity (following business rules and codes of conduct as mentioned in this article) plays an important role. Traditionally companies believe there is a conflict between being sustainable (following ethic rules and taking social responsibilities) and increasing profit of the business. But more recently companies began to believe “business sustainability” could be a profit booster. And, it is more widely believed that the principals of business sustainability can only be applied properly when they benefit the company. Since the nature of companies is to make profit, it is not realistic to expect companies following rules voluntarily. The key point is to maintain an environment where following rules bring benefits to the company and those benefits overweight the cost to do so. Some simple examples are companies applying environment friendly operation methods gain better reputation and customer recognition, which increase their brand value and pull up the profits.

    • Jack Yoest

      Eve, an insightful analysis — you are right about the utilitarian aspect of the secular manager. For example, “Going Green” may be outside the faith tradition of some managers, but the manager will embrace the “religion” to create a customer. Jack Welch may or may not have cared for the environmental movement — but he directed GE understand what the customer valued — and sell to it.

      Well Done,
      Jack

  61. Elizabeth Masarik

    This article brings up several very important points regarding the perception of boundaries in the business world. With gender bias coloring daily perception, it is impossible to assume that all parties are operating on a level playing field. As such that first small misstep (which almost always snowballs into bigger things,) is different for each gender, at least according to this article. In the often times gray areas in business this can easily lead to arguments and misunderstanding as there is no concrete guidelines. This article astutely highlights the need for a guiding principle in business which aligns business success with morality in order to support consistency and growth in the work place.

  62. I have grown up around sports, playing from a young age and through college, so understanding that rules are bent and turned in different directions depending on the individual is inevitable. Like anything we do rules are in place drawing the line between cheaters/risk takers and principles. People are always looking for shortcuts (especially today) and some rather take the greater risk over playing it safe.

    I think it’s important that businessmen and women understand the difference between “cheating” and “ pushing the boundaries”. The business market and sports industry have differences but also have an underlying similarity that one or multiple poor decisions can impact the brand, value, and sales of a company, organization, team and individual. In the end, I am not saying that cheating is the way to go at all. I am saying that understanding the limitations is important for everything we do from work to sports games.

    • Alissa, I agree that there is always some degree of cheating in sports. I like how you displayed that this was simply reality, and that people cannot entirely avoid it from occurring. This is also apparent in the business as well; there are always going to be some people, such as employees or managers, who cheat or lie about something. A person cannot entirely prevent this from happening. However, I think that it is important to recognize that one should have full control over his or her actions. Therefore, a person should not completely disregard his or her actions based on the fact that cheating and lying occurs anyways. A person should worry about whether his or her actions are ethical because he or she should have full responsibility of such.

  63. In basketball, business and in life a little cheating goes a long way. Michael Jordan admitted to cheating a little and Brett Favre admitted to doctoring footballs before games. Those are two undisputed winners. The difference between them and Barry Bonds is the egregiousness of the crime. We hail the former two but shun the latter. To reap the lesson from that example: Bending the rules may be beneficial but to an extent. It comes down the individual and their self control. Not that I would ever recommend arguing with your wife but you could have refuted her. If you were in fact refute her. You were teaching your son how to properly cheat so that he can have a competitive advantage while informing him that going too far would lead to failure.

  64. Alexander Ruhling

    The purpose of ethics in business, as it is in sports, is to do what is right regardless of who is watching. I was a defensive lineman for years, and was always forcibly subject to the mentality of “It’s only holding if the ref catches it.” Time and time again I would miss out on a key tackle because the large high-numbered man in front of me had a hold on my jersey, just out of sight of the referee. This was always frustrating to me, as it was clear that these players had to cheat in order to come out on top. These same frustrations happen in business. Business leaders definitely make decisions that are against the rules and downright immoral because they think that the “referee” won’t see it, decisions that often unfairly hinder the performance of a competitor.

    • Alexander, I agree with you on this. When I played soccer it was always annoying when someone would intentionally grab your shirt or throw elbows behind the play in order to get ahead. I saw though that not only did this effect the mentality of the other team but it usually effected the opponent’s team also, as this kind of behavior permeated that team. This then resulted in unhealthy competition and frustration on both teams. Your response to this article was very relatable.
      Regina

  65. Cheating will never be honored in business and will rarely result in success. Although, I do believe there is a fine line between cheating and innovating. This reminds me of the Facebook scandal in 2002. Facebook founder, Mark Zuckerberg, was accused of ‘cheating’ by his former colleagues because he allegedly ‘stole’ the idea from them. Ultimately, the case did not stand because Zuckerberg didn’t cheat, he innovated.

    Successful businesses and entrepreneurs don’t achieve success by cheating. Business ethics is an important concept that should be engraved into the mind of young entrepreneurs.

  66. Reading this article reminded me of what I studied in my undergraduate career. I received my degree in Sociology and we learned a lot about gender differences and gender inequality, and now I relay this information to the MSBA program. A lot of our classes are seminar based classes, and with my sociology background, I always analyze how people think and their responses to one another. I saw this in the article, people, and people in unison, are going to have different responses to a business problem. Being able to take these differences and turn it in to an opportunity, can lead to only better business opportunities, I am constantly learning problems often provide opportunities.

  67. Rules and guidelines for business are essential for the maintenance of society, but also for basic success and longevity of businesses: just think of anytime a big company or scam was exposed. All the people involved either ended up broke or behind bars. It is usually the latter. Following just rules in business has the same result as following just rules in anything else: beauty and success. All the music and art that people talk about and has survived the test of time in popularity have followed their respective rules. The same is true for all human relationships.

    • Jack Yoest

      Patrick, well said — this is a utilitarian argument where ethics are “essential for the maintenance of society, but also for basic success and longevity of businesses: just think of anytime a big company or scam was exposed. All the people involved either ended up broke or behind bars.”

      You make a compelling argument for doing the right thing.

      Jack

  68. Learning how to cheat is not a morally bad thing. For me, learning how to cheat is even necessary. More importantly, a person needs to learn how to have self-control and how to make a just, morally right choice. The rules are man-made and imperfect. There is always someone who is able to find a way to cheat. I feel the more important matter is that whether that person decides to cheat, to go against his moral.

    • Jack Yoest

      Kien,

      There may be a benefit in knowing how the rules are can be bent — if only so that the ethical individual can recognize the wrong — and keep within the boundaries of the rules and customs.

      Best,
      Jack

    • Kien,
      I agree. There is always going to be someone that finds a way to cheat and maybe the rules are simple so many people can find a way to cheat. However, what i think is important in business but also in everyday life, including a soccer game, is whether that person decides to or not. Whether or not they will cheat will rely on their morals and how much they mean to them.

    • Mary Margaret Sheridan

      Kien, I agree with this. I think there will always be people in any field willing to cheat to try to get ahead. People will find ways to bend the rules to suit their needs. I think it is important whether in a sports game or in business to stay honest and do what you know is right. I think this will serve a person far better than cheating ever will.

  69. After playing years of sports through out my childhood and even reaching as far as a collegiate athlete I do see a correlation between a business goal and a sports team goal. As the father was encouraging his son to cheat in the game, the father was clearly looking for the ultimate goal of winning. Winning in sports can correlate to a business as a ceo focusing on the end goal of making the most profit they can. Both are clearly profit driven and will do anything to make the most or win, even if this means disregarding ethics. However, there are such leaders o that resemble the mother in such they are more worried about doing the right thing even if that does mean losing or not making the profit the leader was aiming for. These types are leaders are satisfied with how they handled the failure and how they got there, because they know they did everything morally correct.

    • Jack Yoest

      Brooke, you are right that winning and making a profit are the desired end states in sports and in business — But our concern is stretching the ethical boundaries beyond a harmless cost-benefit analysis to where decisions can become deadly.

      See the case on the Ford Pinto explosions: http://www.yoest.com/2016/01/15/september-17-what-happens-when-numbers-rule-management-by-the-book-365-daily-bible-verse-one-minute-management-lessons-for-the-busy-faithful/

      Well Done,
      Jack

    • Brooke,

      I completely agree that business and sports have an interesting parallel, in which both are results driven. I think that is most often what causes issues of moral misjudgment. I think this is what makes Charmaine’s comparison so apt. While to a five year old basketball may seem harmless, it is such habits of dishonesty and cutting corners which can translate easily to the business world and life in general. As the stakes become higher and livelihoods/lives are at risk, business leaders need a foundation of morality and fair judgement to make informed and just decisions. This foundation can lie in things as simple as a game of basketball with one’s father.

      David Fisher

  70. It is incredible to think that in sports many spend more time teaching others how to cheat, then on how to play the game well. This same problem can be carried over to business, as many find that it is necessary to cheat in order to get ahead of the competition. The ironic part is that the time spent teaching someone how to cheat can easily be transferred over to developing an unwavering ethical and moral basis where talent and intelligence can be maximized. This ultimately enables you to gain a competitive advantage on your opponent in an honest way. Not only will your business benefit and grow when there is an emphasis on morality and ethics, but so will each and every individual involved, creating the best environment where profits can be made.

    • Regina,

      I agree with your idea that businesses and sports alike should have more emphasis on integrity and ethics. It’s clear that both businesses and sports discuss cheating as strategy because they want a competitive advantage. But I think life is a lot more than just winning. To win is not to exactly succeed. Individuals who cheat their way are not going to be as knowledgeable in the long run. I think it’s our job as business intellects to start changing the way people view business. With teachings of the Catholic Social Tradition, we can instill a new perspective of the business world and how people should conduct business with a moral compass.

      Tiffanie

  71. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this article and hearing your points of view. I was impressed at how much it really made the reader think. Simply put, this article points out the idea that what we are taught, as well as what we practice while we are growing up holds true to who we become as adults. However, I do not necessarily agree with the idea that women, specifically, are more likely to hold more virtue and moral compass in their work, be it sports or business, than men. As a former athlete and as a female I can honestly say that is not always the case. Women just as much as men have the ability to cheat and, frankly, many will. Our generation was brought up on the thought that being “the best” and getting ahead is most important. Because of this, many people leave behind their moral compass and instead take the easy way out which in many cases involves cheating or bending the rules, no matter your gender.

    On the other hand, I think it is important to reiterate from your article that that a sports game always ends. However, the hope for a business is to continue on for years to come. While people may allow a little “bending of the rules” in a game, such is not the same in business. The consequences of these actions must be highlighted. For example, a sports game can continue on without the offending player; the score will not be affected and neither will the team. The player that committed the act, however, will be the only one punished. Whereas a business will be much more heavily affected by a cheating boss or member of the company. If even only one member of a company commits an improper act the entire company will be punished. This could ultimately even result in the demise of the company

    Knowing this now, I think it is important we instill responsibility, virtue and a strong moral compass within our children. Especially, in sports and in school during their learning years so that they are more or less “trained” to not make these mistakes later in life.

  72. Cheating is never appropriate or acceptable. I believe that people control their own actions, and that they ultimately have a choice in the decisions they decide to choose. Although it is sometimes easy to overlook the morality of an action, one should always consider what he or she is doing and determine whether it is truly ethical. Although some actions, such as cheating in a basketball game, may seem small and harmless, they still should not be pursued. Cheating is as if a person is lying, and it does not matter if a person is telling a “white lie” or a “business lie” with little to no consequences. A person should never lie about his or her actions because a lie is a lie, regardless of whether it is viewed as “small” or “big”.
    This article was very interesting, especially since it compared business to a basketball game. I have never viewed business in this perspective before, but I can better see how business and sports relate in some aspects.

  73. I can personally admit to having little knowledge of sports so I may have failed in some instances to find the parallels in the comparison. My conclusion however, is that Charmaine’s disapproval of her son being taught cheating tactics stems from not knowing where the behavior will end, and knowing her son would be the one to face the consequences of such behavior.

    The world of basketball seems to carry much less dire consequences with it than the world of business, but dishonesty is the same across the board. What is the true difference between feigning an injury on the court or fudging the numbers on your balance sheet? Nothing. Both lack integrity. Both are dishonest.

    The take home message is to create a strong moral fiber from the start that leaves zero room for dishonest behavior. Your coach may encourage you to position yourself to be “fouled” by another player, but you are the one who will be sitting on the sidelines when you are caught. As business leaders we have to hold ourselves accountable for our behavior because while others may not always do so, we are the ones who will ultimately pay for our own mistakes.

    Kelly Hickey

    • Christine Loughery

      Kelly,

      I strongly agree with your statement that dishonestly is the same across the board. While not respecting the rules in basketball seems to be so minor compared to not respecting the laws of business, dishonesty is immoral nonetheless. Charmaine recognizes this and works to change this mentality of cheating to get ahead in order to instill an honest mindset in the son. This honest mindset will eventually evolve into a strong ethical foundation. For the sons possible future business career, an ethical foundation will be essential in or to fulfill a truly successful long-term career.

      Christine

  74. I believe that cheating in the sports world and cheating in the business world are two completely different things. In sports it can be worth it to bend the rules even if you are caught. In football cheating can be a type of strategy, and being caught is even factored into that strategy. A corner back can decide that it may be worth it to hold the opposing wide receiver on most plays as long as they are only penalized on a small percentage of the plays. They decide that its worth it to get the penalty on one play if they are able to stop the receiver through holding on the next 5 plays, that is a calculated trade-off that is part of a player or team’s strategy.
    In the business world, however, bending the rules is not something that you just do knowing you will be caught anyway. You are not simply given a 15 yard penalty or a technical foul for committing fraud as part of a company. You can potentially ruin a company and put yourself in jail for the crimes you can commit while with a big corporation. For this reason, I do not believe it is fair to compare the cheating of an athlete to cheating or bending the rules in a big corporation. The sanctions and consequences are far too different to compare the two. In sports a team can still succeed after cheating and can factor cheating into their game-plan. However, in the business world, cheating can potentially ruin lives and companies after being caught and it can result in lengthy jail time.

  75. After reading this article, it gave me a different perspective on how sports and business are related when it comes to cheating and both using it as a way to beat their competitor. Since a persons character can be heavily influenced by not only their surroundings but how they were raised its important to teach kids that cheating is wrong no matter how easy it is to get away with. I think that Charmaine gave a great point on not wanting to teach her child to cheat on such an early age. By learning to play by the rules from the start can be a great gateway into making honest business ventures in the future if he decides to open his own business. By learning these morals from an early age and sticking to these morals can be used in a wide range of situations whether it be in sports or in a business setting. Of coarse even though one can be running the business in the most ethical way possible it doesn’t mean that the competitor is playing by the same moral standards. Although it might seen easy to cheat and get away with it, it’s important to understand that cheating whether one gets caught doing it or not its wrong. It has be seen over time, a customer wants to conduct business with a company who is running their business in an ethical manner and not “bending the rules” in order to get ahead of the competitor.

  76. Christine Loughery

    This article offered a very strong comparison between the results of cheating in something as minor as a basketball game to something as serious as a business decision. While cheating in basketball rarely amounts to anything more than a foul, cheating in business can result in legal violations and business failure. Despite the large distance in the severity of these outcomes, the lesson of this article remains constant – an ethical foundation is essential in order to be morally successful and prosperous.

    The father was wrong to teach his son to cheat and bend the rules of the basketball game because he was helping to form in his son an unethical foundation. It is very possible that if the son continued to bend the rules in basketball, he would begin to bend the rules in other aspects of his life. If the son carried over this mentality of cheating despite consequences to his future business profession, he could get into serious trouble that could hurt his career.

    In this article Charmaine recognized the correlation of respecting the laws of sports and the laws of business. By reversing the formation of an immoral foundation within the son, she set him up for a long-term respectable future of success.

    Christine Loughery

  77. This was a great read, very interesting points made by all parties. I specifically enjoyed the back-to-back debate between the husband and wife. The wife made and interesting comment, “Women do creative products, creative deals not creative accounting.” This was an interesting point but I question it very much and what exactly that was entailed to mean?

    This is an interesting situation because cheating is of course never acceptable, but as an athlete myself the only way to be competitive is understanding how you can gain an edge on your opponent. By teaching his son to gently touch the opponents elbow to help deflect the shot is gaining an edge. If it was breaking the rules (cheating) then the referee would make that official call.

    • Brendan, All in all I agree with this, but to what degree is cheating not cheating just because you don’t get caught? Just because the referee did not see you cheat, or your boss did not see that you cut corners on a business report does not mean that it did not happen.

  78. Chelsi Marcellana

    With regards to business, this approach may seem like an opportunity to some, or an immoral sin to others. Depending on a business owner’s views on ethics and morality, they are constantly faced with decisions that test their views. For example it owners have the ability to cheat customers of expensive products with cheap quality, steal money, and so on. Ultimately I do think that these people will pay for their own mistakes, as it is morally wrong. Yes, it is important to be “a good person” but decisions like these come down to simply doing the right thing. In sports it is easy to get away with a quick jab at an opponent without letting the referee see, but in business people have the power to hurt others or provide them with the right service they need. Ethics is very important when it comes to business and we must strive to have our morals as the motivation when making decisions.

  79. Cheating is always associated with a negative connotation. Teaching a five year old boy how to cheat first instead of the basic fundamental rules of a basketball game is not going to make that child go far in having a basketball career or help him build a moral conscience. A five year old should not develop habits that are going to make him have a poor character. After playing basketball for eight years, I have learned that illegal movement or being too aggressive can hinder your performance on the court. Once in a while you are going to have to foul in order to block an opponent’s shot but if you continuously foul out of game, you are just going to be sitting on the sidelines. And that is not fun; you are watching others create victory without you. Just like in business, if you bend the rules too much, you can get into serious trouble. If you are constantly price fixing or participating in tax evasion, there is a high possibility of you going to jail. The only difference with basketball and business is that you only get once chance instead another game. I understand that business is like the survival of the fittest but there are other ways to be aggressive without stepping on people’s toes or hurting yourself. You can be competitive by taking risks that should not jeopardize your status as a person.

  80. After reading this article, it really gave me some food for thought. As a softball player I could relate well to some of the points made. When I think of sports, cheating is in fact one of the last things that comes to my mind, I first think of drive, determination, passion, skill, etc. and etc. I feel that if one cheats in a sport they are cheating themselves, because they would not have won fairly.

    As we tie this into business, I do believe that athletics have taught me some great lessons for my future. Sports teach the lessons of teamwork, communication, and down right honesty. As a potential marketing major, these skills are extremely important. One needs to understand how to properly communicate with others, and complete tasks to the best of their ability without cutting corners. I think that in the business world it is important for people to understand the borderline between cheating and honesty. It is honesty that grows an ultimately successful business.

  81. This article really makes you think about what someone will do to win a game or make a quick buck. I feel that it is unethical as well as unnecessary to make such risks trying to cheat. For example, a ref can turn his back and you can do something illegal that would cause a flag or foul; or you can work even harder to make up for the thing you may have lost by cheating. By that I mean in business I think it is much more worth it to go through a rough patch and to power through it and make your way to the top. Than to make an illegal move in your market per say to get immediate success, which can also bury you by doing something like that. If you are caught cheating you can hurt your team or business more than you would have been helping them by cheating. In closing I believe it is more ethical as well as logical to do it by the book no matter what it takes.

  82. I found this article very interesting. I have played sports my whole life, and you always see other players trying to cheat. Sometimes they get away with it, and sometimes they don’t. I believe that attaining something through cheating means you never truly attained the win. We should not be cheating to get what we want. In the article it states that as long as the referee does not see you cheating you can get away with it, however that is not the case. Other team members, coaches, and people on the sideline can all see someone when they are trying to cheat. Using cheating as a method does not show very good character, and does not show very good trust, and no one wants to work for or work with someone whom he or she can not trust.

  83. I like this article because it stresses ethics and how important it is to be successful in business. This article showed the perspective difference between men and woman. Men were apt to bend the rules because they played sports like that and it translated to business. I like when they talked about how games end but business is forever and when you manage a business you have to look at the long term picture. Companies need to be ethical and good core values in order to operate long term. I completely agree with this article and appreciate what it stands for.

  84. Breaking the Rules of the Game: Training Small Business Owners

    I found this article to be very concise, yet thought provoking. The title itself is very ironic when relating training and breaking the rules. Like many other students, I found that comparing a game versus a business is not heavily linkable. When players break rules in a game, it’s most often times done strategically. In the NFL, for instance, players are taught to understand when they should cause a foul or penalty in order for some higher goal (winning the game). In the sports spectrum, these “rule breaking” plays are known by every NFL team out there and are socially acceptable since every team does so. This means of breaking the rules is not as bad because it almost creates a leveled playing field.

    In contrast, breaking the rules in business is done a lot more discrete because it’s not socially acceptable. The consequences and risks are higher, such that scandals usually ruin careers or businesses. I think ethics is so important to learn when approaching business concepts because it’s one’s personal and moral decision to make. I believe that businesses will only succeed in the long run if they adhere to moral standards and have people’s interest in mind.

  85. This article brought forth a lot of ideas I had never really thought about. Business and sports in my mind have always been two completely different entities. This article proved to me that they’re not and that a lot of the decisions and lessons you learn in sports relates so much to business. Morally I think that it’s not okay to cheat but if I was ever faced with making a decision that could gain or loose hundreds of thousands of dollars based on wether or not I decided to cheat it might not be as easy of a decision. During my days of playing soccer my coach definitely taught us how to cheat, how to fake an injury etc. It is kind of frightening that these lessons are being taught to us so young and with such little fall out from our cheating and in the future it could influence you to cheat on something even bigger and with huge fallout like the Tyco Executives.

  86. This is very interesting article to me, I like the way you have related the basketball to the business. What I learned from this article is that it is easy to cheat but taking this risk is not worth it because it is easier to get out of it. I believe focusing on running business following the rules is the path to success.

  87. A lot of people in our generation can relate to this article because most people have been a part of a sports team at some point in their life. Cheating in sports and cheating in the business world are two relatable things because you are a part of a team in both aspects. If you choose to cheat and get caught you are essentially letting your team down because now you are going to have to face the penalty. Sports can teach you a lot about life so if you choose to cheat in sports it will lead to you cheating in the business world and potentially loosing your job.

    • Mr. Salzano,

      I agree that playing on a sports team teaches you a lot about situations you will experience in your daily life. Your actions on and off the field portray your character and not only affect you but the people surrounding you. If you choose to cheat and the results so happen to be in your favor, you are more inclined to cheat again the next time you are faced with a similar situation. I consider this the snowball effect and eventually an act of cheating or dishonesty that you once considered small will have large consequences in your life.

  88. When I played basketball one of the older girls on the team had been encouraging everyone on the team, especially the new people, to cheat in order to win. I vividly remember thinking that I did not want to win if it meant cheating. When I talked to my mom about it she said, “Whatever you decide to do, be sure to remember that at the end of the game you are going to walk down the line and high-five each girl on the opposing team and say “good game”. If you cheat and you cannot, in good conscious, look the girls from the other team in the eyes, and congratulate them on their work, you should not cheat.” After hearing that I decided not to be a cheater. I believe that when you decide to cheat you also by default choose to impact someone else’s life.
    This article reminded me that cheating is not just a middle school athletics problem; it is a societal issue. When business people decide to cheat they impact the lives of others. In most cases the cheating is not caught and also impacts people on the opposing end negatively.
    I look forward to a renewed higher standard of integrity in the business world.

  89. I also found this article interesting how basketball and business are related somehow. Cheating can results to negative consequences, In my opinion it is important to set boundaries. The two most significant thing to consider in a business is to have an ethical behavior and to make sure everything is legal by law.

  90. This is an interesting take on something that many people don’t like to think about. People in business will and do cheat and cut corners when they can, but all in different amounts. Nevertheless, teaching a child to cheat as he is growing up makes cheating less of an option or last case scenario, but as an immediate reaction. cheating should be one of the ugly realities of the world the child can learn when they grow up, but implementing it in him at an early age is setting the stage for a man who will scam people out of everything they have. He may be good at cheating, but it will be the only thing he knows.

  91. I also found this article interesting how basketball and business are related somehow. Cheating can results to negative consequences in a business. In my opinion it is important to set boundaries the two most significant things to consider in a business is to have an ethical behavior and to make sure everything is legal by law. To be unethical in a business sometimes helps to gain more profit, however, in most times it can result to backfire in negatively in future wise. Honesty is important to customers once they feel that the employee is honest they will consider coming back in future.

  92. Cheating in sports and business are different since the risks are incomperable as one may get you put in prison and the other should have no significant lasting effect on that same person after the game. In sports you get a slap on the wrist and maybe a suspension but you are usually allowed to play again the next game. In the business world if you break the rules you are often imprisoned and it ruins any reputation to the extent you would not be able to work in that field again. Practicing the saver business rights would be the best way to operate a small business since avoid all the unnecessary risks involved with being caught.

  93. This is an interesting article. I find it hard to relate to the idea that sports may be the starting place of cheating since I swim. In swimming there is no way to cheat. it begins in a state of total equality. Everyone must swim the same distance and those who do it the fastest win. There are no cut corners. When I was growing up I was not one who regularly broke the rules. Perhaps it was this different way of viewing sports that led to this. It may be why I am less inclined to break the rules now.

    But the end result is the same. Behaviors learned early on, whether that means cheating or following the rules affect how we act in the future.

  94. I thought this was a very interesting article that relates ethics to both sports and business. However I do think there is a difference between cheating/rule breaking when it comes to sports and working in the business world to a certain extent. I don’t think that there is anything wrong with giving your child small tips on pulling a jersey and not getting caught. Sports are competitive games and many people that play them have a strong desire to win and will do whatever it takes to win. However I think you can only taking bending the rules to a certain extent. When it becomes past this point that is when cheating should be taken seriously in sports. As to cheating in business I think that should never be encouraged because one small mistake could get you fired, or cost someone else a lot of money.

  95. I enjoyed reading this article because of the points made about the importance of integrity. Many people believe that business is simply about making money and forget about the ethical values that are necessary when in business. Personally I feel that in any task one performs it is important to do it to the best of ones ability. It is evident that not every task or activity will be easy, such as sports or even certain business decisions, but if one has been taught and prepared to perform a task well, I believe that it would be innate to perform such action well and with integrity as one was taught. Cheating is often done because the person feels that it is easier to cheat rather than to perform an action with integrity, and although the level of difficulty may be less, the amount of risk one takes when cheating is not worth any reward one may receive.

    • Jack Yoest

      Maria, An excellent point — work well done should also be a “good work” a virtuous work. This is where the job is done right in a righteous manner.

      Well said,
      Jack

  96. I enjoyed the way this article began and the style of the article grabbed my attention. The dialogue between the man and his wife I found somewhat comical gave me the desire to further read the article; as well as being a fellow athlete I enjoy hearing how people tie in sports to things that can be related to life. Even in sports we have the desire to cheat and even sometimes to cheat ourselves in terms of running and a lengthy preseason. But, I agree and was glad that the man agreed with his wife and decided to teach his son the proper way since cheaters never win.

  97. Victoria Principato

    Although I’m not currently an athlete, I have always grown up playing some sort of sport. From soccer to swimming, or tennis to track, chances are I’ve tried it. In trying so many different sports, I’ve noticed one thing; every person on that team has experienced the temptation to break the rules in order to win. I find it very interesting that this article relates sports to business, saying that in business, people experience this very same temptation in order to get ahead. The overall message of this article is that we must stay true to our morals in all that we do, whether it be at work or at play. It is key to check ourselves and our actions, and keep in mind that our actions reflect who we truly are and our beliefs.

  98. Abdulaziz Almuhanna

    I believe this is a must read article. Cheating is unmoral in both business and sports. In my opinion, cheating is a waste of time and lose of people’s confidence as well.

  99. Mary Margaret Sheridan

    I do think that there is an interesting connection between ‘cheating’ in sports and ‘cheating’ in a business situation. In both circumstances, it’s all about getting the edge over your competitors. This can be done in a legal way or an illegal way. Both sports players and businessmen alike will get creative to try to find some way to get ahead. This creates some grey area as to what is considered right and wrong. It’s up to the individual and his peers to decide what is the right thing to do, or how far they can push the envelope before they are in dangerous territory. There is also the awareness that if you don’t cheat, your competitor might. Not every person is going to choose the moral course of action. Only the individual can make the choice for what they think is an acceptable action. I think that the smartest and most successful players and businessmen will find ways to win without breaking the rules.

    • Jack Yoest

      Mary Margaret, you are on to a greater truth. Ethical behavior is part of a culture. For example, in USA, honking a car horn is considered aggressive and has led to anger and road rage.

      Honking a horn on the streets of India is considered a courtesy and is normal and customary. Ethical behavior and ‘politeness’ and norms can vary.

      Good comment,
      Jack

  100. I found this to be a rather cheesy passage, No father tells their wife that he is teaching is son how to cheat. However, the article gives a clear example on how cheating is fruitless in both sports and business. Cheating will only get you so far in sports; Michael Jordan is not remembered as the greatest basketball player of all time because he cheated. It is also doubtful anyone plays in the NBA because they were able to cheat their way into the league. Similarly in business, Steve Jobs is not remembered as one of the most innovative people of the century because of his robust ability to cheat. The moral of the story is that cheating only bears short term results, which are mundane compared to long term results. A basketball player may learn to cheat, but he will only win that small game in which he cheated, and if he or she relies on his abilities to cheat, they will only reach a finite limit in their basketball career. The same goes for the business world; cheating will only bear short term results.

  101. Jack Yoest

    John, Steve Jobs might be the most complicated of Cheating Examples. He created customers and billions in wealth. But routinely cheated the physically disabled.

    He always parked his Mercedes in a convenient, reserved Handicapped Parking space. A simply awful person.

    But yes, I am typing this on an Apple computer…

    Best,
    Jack

  102. This article made me think about the motives of cheaters. Do winners never cheat because they keep on winning without cheating, or because they know cheating to be wrong? Are cheaters not willing to compete, or is it possible they recognize the rules as unfair? Some of the most significant commercial developments came as a result of cheating. Thomas Edison slandered Nikola Tesla out of business, yet the United States entered the 20th century with abundant electric power. More recently, if Mark Zuckerberg hadn’t stolen the concept of Facebook from his Harvard classmates, then social media wouldn’t be a publicly traded entity. I would argue that innovation sometimes require behavior that would be considered dishonest given the place and time. The most productive economies though place an emphasis on trust and integrity. Economists and sociologists often trace the success of the Industrial Revolution to the Protestant Work Ethic, whereby Americans view success as a function of hard work and a good reputation.

    • Jack Yoest

      Joe, this is the Great Dilemma of wealth creation — there always seems to be a scoundrel at the source of any great achievement.

      But the success of the USA is based — not on a few innovations — but on a culture based on Trust and a community work ethic.

      No matter the individual’s Faith tradition, our culture adhered to the Biblical admonition, “What good is it for someone to gain the whole world, and yet lose or forfeit their very self?” Luke 9:29

      This is the America Exceptionalism.

      Well Written,
      Jack

  103. It is a natural human instinct at times to slide by the rules and engage in cheating, especially after doing it once and seeing how easy it can be. It becomes a slippery slope and it can have severe consequences on not only your career but your character. This being said, if taught to cheat in one field, wether it is within sports, business, or schooling, it will only carry on to the next field in your life. I really enjoyed this article because it brings up some important points. The first one is the one I mentioned above. If you become accustomed to cheating in anything in your life, it will only follow you and become an outlet. Those who truly want to be successful can attain that but they truly never will if they are doing it unethically because eventually they will get caught. Another point that puzzled me was the idea that it is not instinctual for women to cheat. Although women do respect and understand boundaries, I think cheating is instinctual and can be found within anyone.

  104. I believe that in life to be successful you have to play by all of the rules. I also believe that it is very important for people to play by the rules from an early age. Through life if you are cheating and bending the rules then you will most likely be easily persuaded or more likely to make terrible decisions as an adult that can result in a financial and logistical nightmare. Cheaters don’t win and winners don’t cheat. Obviously in playing sports bending the rules and learning how to gain a competitive edge within the rules of the game is acceptable behavior. However, if one is cheating this is obviously not acceptable and could just be the beginning of worse decisions to come that could go from basketball court to your office.

  105. In order to ensure success, without the risk of putting something on the line, one must play the game within the confines of the rules. I do think, however, that one can be aggressive in certain situations in order to have the outcome play into their favor. My collegiate field hockey coach placed a strong emphasis on professional fouls: in order to guide the calls in our favor, we could manipulate a play into getting a call on the other team and winning the ball. This wasn’t cheating, it was just intelligently playing the game. There is a difference between cheating and manipulation, in the sense that you can act in a way that may be unorthodox, but is still within the confines of the rules and solidifies success. The same thing goes for a professional setting, if someone is good at their job, they can play by the rules and still successfully guide things in their favor because they are knowledgable about their industry and their competition. The key to success is knowing the fine line between situations where it is okay to be aggressive and acknowledging when things need to be scaled back. These concepts are relevant in both athletic and professional settings, which is what makes them so universal.

  106. Cheaters never win and winners never cheat. Literally speaking, I do not find this statement to be true. But morally speaking, I could not agree more. Whether it be in sports or in business, people should rise and fall based on how hard they work. Unfortunately, in some cases individuals “bend the rules” a bit to get ahead or to reach their ultimate goal but if they cheat along the way, they will only be hurting themselves in the long run. It is difficult to depict whether or not an action is ethically right or wrong, especially when the intention of the act is unclear. For example, in basketball fouls happen. Most fouls are unintentional and are considered acceptable. But a flagrant foul is considered unsportsmanlike conduct and is called when there is excessive or severe contact. Regardless of whether the intention was to go for the ball or not, the result of the action is still the same. We as humans do not have any control over the outcome of a situation but we do have control over our intentions, the circumstances, and our actions. And it is our duty and obligation to act in a way that can only benefit ourselves and society.

  107. Business penalties and consequences can often seem confusing and intangible; however, they are a serious challenge to business decision making. This apt comparison to the sports world, specifically basketball, both simplifies and illuminates how cognizant and morally aware one must be when running a business.
    My grandmother refused to play games with us as kids because, as she self-proclaimed, she couldn’t help but cheat to win. I questioned why it mattered for something as silly as a board game, but upon reflection I see the importance of being aware of our inclination to take the “easy” route. Human nature is to cut corners and get ahead of your competitor, but this does not always equate to fairness or morality. Therefore, in order to make just decisions, especially in business, we must be aware of just how challenging and counterintuitive it can be to do something harder but just.
    When a ref says a ball was tipped out of bounds by your opponents team, but you know it was you who tipped it out- it does not seem logical to own up to your mistake because it penalizes your team. But, much like Charmaine recognizes, a player cannot feel confident in their abilities if their success was achieved through deceitfulness. This translates perfectly to business, because although it may be easier to cut corners and break rules, we must understand that the consequences for doing so severely outweigh the benefits. While it may in the short term bring you success, you can only get away with cheating so many times. Honest and integrity will bring benefit not only for your business, but for your personal growth in all aspects of life.

  108. I find that this article not only brings up the issue of whether it’s OK or not to cheat, but also brings up an underlying issue of how men and women think differently. For instance, men may view cheating (not referring to relationship infidelity) as a means to get ahead, whereas women may immediately consider cheating as morally wrong and therefore less likely to cheat themselves. Obviously, this is generalization, but for the sake of the argument, a woman’s reluctance contributes to why she is less aggressive than her male counterpart both in and outside of the workplace. Biologically and culturally, women as mothers are nurturers and teachers who pass down tradition. Therefore, I can understand Ms. Charmaine’s dismay at seeing that her son was being taught to do something morally irresponsible. This is not to say, however, that women never cheat. I just believe that because men are instinctively more aggressive, they are more likely to take such risks and justify why they do so in contrast to a woman’s perspective. Overall, I believe cheating is wrong, but I also believe that in certain situations there are exceptions.

    • Jack Yoest

      Jamilah, a good analysis on how different genders see the world differently. Women are indeed more concerned about relationships and are hard wired to nurture as you note.

      This is terrific as an account manager — but can be a challenge in negotiations because woman can sometimes value the relationship more than the deal. For example, a female is less likely to ‘demand’ a higher starting salary than a male.

      Well Done,
      Jack

  109. I find that quote by Bill Maher to be very true. Many people live life on the edge, just trying to figure out where the line is so they know not to cross it. Sadly, many people view business professionals as dishonest, money hungry scoundrels who will do anything to make an extra thousand bucks. Take Enron. They kept pushing the boundaries of what they could do to make it seem that their company was not in swimming in debt. Their executives also did back-room deals to off load their stock in the company while telling the world they were investing. Business professionals have a responsibility to be better then that. If more business executives began acting in a morally upright way and not look for ways to cheat, the world may see them in a much better light.

  110. Most people cheat because they’re paying more attention to what they are missing rather than what they have. The main aim when playing a sport is to win. But sometimes people don’t realise that winning is not the only way to measure success. Success is the quality of the effort you put into something to achieve the maximum of your potential. Through being an undergraduate business student, I have come to learn that success and winning are two different things, and why would you want either through cheating? The only person that you are cheating, is yourself and that doesn’t even come into the same level of satisfaction you feel when you succeed or win truthfully and fairly. Business takes the same approach. It is not always about making the most amount of money, it is about creating and maintaining customer satisfaction, creating value, portraying trust. Not taking shortcuts and cutting corners to increase your profit. Cheating is a choice, not a mistake.

  111. My father played football at Clemson along side with Super Bowl Champion William Perry, so sports were a staple in my development as a child. Just like you, my father taught me a few lessons on how to “cheat” and get away with it. Two examples where to properly hold a player in football and not get caught or to throw my knee into the back of a players thigh when covering him in basketball. However I do agree with Charmaine. Cheating and trying to get away with it might work a few times before getting caught, then once caught, your team might suffer a penalty that could potential cost the game.

    Now in regards to a small business or enterprise, cheating could be life threatening to the company’s well being. Enron is a great example you use. Enron was illegally tampering with their financial statements, which in the short-term, created immense amount of wealth for a lot of people. However in the long run, their “cheating” was discovered, and many people were incarcerated. I believe greed was the root to their decision making.

  112. I think this is a very interesting article that makes a great comparison. Being a musician, as well as an athlete, I often make the comparison between sports and music, so I really enjoyed thinking of sports and business. While reading this article, I remembered a similar situation with my father when he told me to shove my knuckle into the defenders back when I was getting “boxed-out”. Was this cheating, or is it a tactic that other players were missing out on? In business I feel there are many situations similar to this. Is it really cheating if no one finds out? Is doing something that falls into a grey area wrong or just frowned upon? These are the discussions I know I will have to face no matter what career I have. This article also led me to think about if cheating or lying could be beneficial? What if lying could save your company and no one would know? This being said I feel that cheating is wrong and that we need more people in the world to feel this way. This is much easier said than done, but “Winners never cheat, and cheaters never win”.

  113. After playing football through HS and college, I have been subjected to many different coaching styles. The common theme throughout each coaching lesson was to play the game as honest as possible and maintain good sportsmanship. It seemed that the harder one worked; the less likely the temptation there was to cheat or bend the rules. The same can be said in business. The hard one works, the more training and practices one applies to their craft, the less tempted they are to bend the rules to benefit themselves. People will often argue that cheating happens all the time and that if it is not a serious offense it is ok to bend the rules. However, this type of behavior and though is proof of the corruption behind bending the rules. Cheating starts with an inconsequential offense and it is a slippery slope downhill to bigger and worse crimes. A salesman starts off by overstating his expense report one month, and a few quarters later he is caught embezzling funds from the company. Without ethics, business would be a lawless and corrupt industry beneficial for only the few in charge.

  114. Who is the judge or referee that makes the call of cheating or thinking outside the box? Of course, cheating is 100% unacceptable in any environment, however, doing things in an unconventional way is not and there is a fine line between these two. Cheating may have some short-term success, but outside of the box thinking will create a space for future success.

    In sports, and also in business, creating your own rules (the ethical/fair way) will set anyone apart from competitors and make a lasting impression. I believe paving new rules and paths suspend an individual into innovative success, but lying and betrayal is no way to accomplish this.

  115. I think it’s always easy to justify small missteps in business, life or virtually any scenario. Unfortunately, it’s the precedent that is set that leads to the real trouble. Enron, as mentioned is the ultimate example of this. But there are many other business stories can look back to for good counsel. Worldcom fell apart on the gradual fading of aggressive, but legal accounting to illegal manipulation of SEC records. Arthur Andersen similarly collapsed in the wake of a lost sight of good business. I don’t think it ultimately comes down to thinking outside the box or being risky enough, it has to deal with the integrity of how you got to where you are.

  116. Adriana Del Castillo

    This article shows how important it is for us to think about how our actions affect others, including the business world as a whole. Cheating and knowing how to “play the game” can be beneficial in the short run, however, I don’t believe it would be in the long run. As business students, we are taught to act ethically, and we should continue to think and act this way long after we have graduated. In most cases, cheating even makes a small problem become much larger, with worse consequences in the future. It is important to have a strong foundation in order to behave ethically in business, which leads to greater success.

  117. This is a crucial concept for anyone in business (and every field) on reflect on. Ethics does not see a distinction between business and life. We must practice making honest and ethical business decisions, because only through practicing virtue in every aspect of our lives do we become virtuous and morally upright. And when we are, it becomes easier to make the right decisions without too much thought, because it just becomes habit. The article is good because it addresses something everyone can relate to. We all at some point have thought about, or actually cheated, if the benefits are great enough and the risk of getting caught is low enough. But it is important to realize that these actions, however small we consider them to be, add up and have the potential to influence even bigger decisions down the road. That is why we must constantly be aware and exercise our virtues.

  118. Jack, I think Charmaine’s comments are spot on. Big cheaters always start off by cheating little. Cheating in “just a game” doesn’t mean that you acknowledge that it’s just a game and that its part of the fun to cheat “a little,” what it really shows is that you acknowledge the rules and choose to disregard them. I completely agree with Charmaine and wouldn’t be surprised if the Tyco boys before the big scandal had been involved in multiple little cheats.

  119. This article emphasizes the importance of maintaining an honest business. Just because one may be able to cut corners without getting caught, does not mean that one should take that chance. Personally, my Dad owns a small business, and he has often reiterated stories to my family at the dinner table. As we have gotten older, he often reminds my brother, sister and I the importance of being penny wise and pound foolish, if something appears to be sketchy, beware, as it could come to bite you! Additionally, I am an Irish dancer and the competitions are subjective, unfortunately, “political shenanigans” occurs. This type of cheating has divided us, competitors, as we often joke on the sidelines as to who is the real winner. My coach reminds us often that to win under “political” circumstances will eventually “bite that winner,” and they will be “blackballed” among the competitors and the honest adjudicators.

    • Jack Yoest

      Katie, yes–not getting caught is not the same as innocence.

      The challenge, you well note, is that office politics can also bend rules toward an outcome that might ‘cheat’ a deserving winner.

      Well Done,
      Jack

  120. Madalaina D'Angelo

    This article raises not only questions of the moral code that exists within business, but also made me wonder about the gender roles that exist as well, as if women may be stronger ethic leaders but prove to not be ruthless enough, in their unwillingness to cheat, to make risky moves or bend moral lines for better payout or results? Either way, operating with an unethical business regime will inevitably catch up to a company, and an unethical management style will prove to be unhelpful when trying to motivate and obtain a group of workers.

    • Jack Yoest

      Madalaina, Outstanding observation — women in leadership is real diversity — in the best way. It has been noted in the literature that women on a team will be like an anchor — or, shall we say, an Anchoress, and will be the moral center of most any group.

      Cheers,
      Jack

  121. Leanne Robinson

    I really enjoyed reading this article, the sports analogy really hooked me in and allowed me to fully understand moral ethics in business. In many ways, business is like sports, and while “playing the game while the umpire’s back is turned” is not the way I plan on doing business, it is in many ways, how others will. The end of this article ended on a some what comforting note, as family businesses are meant to last for generations, and hopefully the moral code that most family businesses run on will follow suit. Great read!

    • Jack Yoest

      Leanne, good point — the good and evil we do can live beyond us and our direct influence. And many times we will will not know who we touch.

      Managers, like royalty, are always being watched.

      Best,
      Jack

  122. Abdulaziz Baamer

    This is very interesting article to me, I like the way you have related the basketball to the business. What I learned from this article is that it is easy to cheat but taking this risk is not worth it because it is easier to get out of it. I believe focusing on running business following the rules is the path to success. Cheating is always unacceptable weather in games or business because it is unethical.

    • Jack Yoest

      AB, True, cheating might be “legal” or not illegal and we might even get away with the infraction — but it is not ethical.

      Our standard had best be the highest ethical standard.

      Cheers,
      Jack

  123. katarina percopo

    I thoroughly enjoyed having a chance to read this article, it shed a lot of insight on me into regard of cheating. Cheating is something that happens daily and in so many different aspects whether it be in business school, sports like summarized in this article or just in any kinds of daily activities. To me, cheating is a coward act and especially in business, if you and another person are working at the same task but you take the easy way and cheat you have an unfair advantage and no one really knows what you are actually capable of.

    • Jack Yoest

      KP, you are so right — cheating is cowardly because it is easier than being a stand-up man or woman. And character is revealed under the temptation — the near occasion of sin.

      Well Said,
      Jack

  124. Samantha Pemberton

    This was a very interesting read. What I got from this article is that there is a difference between being a risk taker, and being a cheater whether it is in the real business world, business school or even on a sports team. I feel that some low-level managers, or employees looking for a promotion might try to get away with whatever they can “Whenever the referee, the umpire, the opposition, whoever, turns his back…” that is not how ethical businesses operate. In today’s society, especially after the 2008 financial crisis, ethical business and their practices are becoming more appealing to prospective employees and investors.

  125. Gerald Esparza

    As a sports fan I understood the story being taught here and thoroughly enjoyed. I remember when I was younger and was being taught how to play sports while i was never coached or instructed to bend the rules it was something that was picked up through games and I never looked at it as cheating in a sport because I felt everyone was trying to gain some form of competitive advantage but after reading this article, it is a slippery slope and is just as relatable in the world of business. I wouldn’t cheat in business so why would I cheat in a sport. I think the ethical story is important here because we often need a reminder that in any capacity cheating is not right regardless if its a small innocent violation like bending a rule while a ref isn’t looking or committing business crimes.

  126. Catherine Warchot

    I think that this is a very interesting article, and it relates to a lot of things that I myself have experienced. Not to be sexist, but I have noticed that men do have more of a tendency to try to find “loopholes” and such so that they can “bend the rules”, and that women typically play by the book. I think that it is very important for any sort of business class to teach ethics so that everyone learns how to be fair in the business world. The very first business class that I ever took taught me ethics in business, and I think that other universities should do that same.

  127. First of all I would like to agree with some thoughts about gender bias I read in the discussion. I understand how would a women react to cheating because of many situations women are exposed to. I also understand that with out a doubt cheating is part of the game of life. Cheating can be done in literally anything, marriage, sports, tests, business, etc. However cheating is a decision people take. It is important to recognize that cheating does happen, however is even more important to make the decision not to cheat. Especially in business there are so many ways to cheat. Sometimes you don’t have to be a bad person to cheat, most of times people who cheat in business are really smart but get carried away by greed and ambition. Once again it is still a decision. We live in a world where cheating happens all of the time and can be so easy to simply do it and think no one is going to find out, and it may happen, in fact it does. Nevertheless it is important to keep in mind that not even all the amount of money in the world that cheating can give you, nothing will beat the feeling of accomplishing your goals with hard work and honesty. Finally, something that I will always keep in mind after reading this article is ” Cheaters never win. Winners never cheat”.

  128. Jack Yoest

    Paola, a well written comment– You are right, “cheating is a decision people take…”

    Managers can help staff make the right decisions by encouraging proper behavior, as Charmaine did above — or with controls. Guardrails to help “avoid the near occasion of sin” because we all fall short of the Glory of God.

    We are an imperfect, fallen people. And this challenge is the work of today’s enlightened manager.

    Cheers,
    Jack

  129. At first glance, my thoughts were precisely:
    “My God, does this guy have a lot of you know whats to talk to his wife like that. Better hope he has a comfortable couch to sleep on”. But then I though.. “Why is this article written and why was it a suggested read?”.

    Growing up, I never really was a sports kind of gal. More of the cheerleading type. So naturally, the idea of cheating to get by thing didn’t make much sense to me. But after thinking about this, and how it applies to business, it sort of does makes sense. Especially in the marketing world. This article reminded me of every commercial I have ever seen that made me think, “Who’s actually buying this crap?”. But then I would think again, and realize that even though I’m not buying into this scam ,there must be a lot of people that do, otherwise these people wouldn’t be making any money, and would then have to move on to their next million dollar idea.

    Business, but specifically Marketing is all about appealing to some specific audience, and understanding that your product or idea isn’t going to make everybody throw their wallets at you. And that’s okay. If there are corners that you can cut to appeal to your “extreme fan”, as a professor of mine explained in one of my first business classes a few years back, you’re more than likely going to be okay. And if that is done by “cheating” so to speak, then man, I’m saying cut every single corner you can! (spoken from a lifelong painfully average student). I am very excited, as a woman, to learn how to think more creatively and how to be a more competitive woman in the business world to show all these men that woman can be just as successful as they are!

    Truly an inspiring article! Thanks for the great read!

  130. As a college athlete myself, I find this article incredibly relatable. I have been raised and taught that in volleyball you lie. You lie saying you did not touch the ball when you did, and you lie saying you did not go under the net (even though you did and it put the other team at risk) when you did. At the same time my coaches emphasized teamwork, leadership, and good sportsmanship. It’s a bit hypocritical if you think about it. You can see how sometimes this strategy transfers over to business. However, the consequences of getting caught doing unethical acts in business are much greater than in volleyball, where the opposing team would simply get an extra point. It definitely has me thinking now, and more conscious about my acts from here on. I also found this interesting article explaining how it can be beneficial to keep a list of unethical things you’ll never do to keep you on the straight path throughout the years you are in the business world: https://hbr.org/2016/05/keep-a-list-of-unethical-things-youll-never-do

  131. I thought this article was quite interesting considering one of my majors is accounting. The author alludes to the Tyco and Enron scandals, which I learned in great detail in my forensic accounting class. Enron and Tyco did just as the author described people do when the ref has his back turned, get as much as you possibly can without getting caught. However, they both went way into the deep end and tried to get too much and ultimately their scandals became exposed. The officers of these companies attempted to bend “the rules” but were unable to cover their tracks in the end.

    • Jack Yoest

      Tim, good observation. The bending of the rules moves the offender down the slippery slope. And once going down, the perspective changes; there is a new ‘normal’ where unethical moves slowly, incrementally to illegal.

      Cheers,
      Jack

  132. As a swimmer, my sport is a little bit different than most. I have swam since age 5 on through now – I’m still at it. It consumes much of my life. For years before college, I practiced 48 out of 52 weeks of the year. 14-16 hours per week, all to have that amazing meet performance at the end of the season. I say swimming is unique because you can’t cheat (for the most part – if performance drugs are your thing, by all means). You’re in a lane, by yourself, up against the clock, with nothing but your training backing you up. There are things in a race that can disqualify you, but any swimmer will tell you that these race errors don’t give an advantage if broken. They actually slow you down. When I read this article, I thought of swimming in this way. The way to the best result in the sport is to not cheat, and I think in business and in life, it all works in much the same way. The best results come from your hard work and dedication, not from cutting corners without getting caught.

    • Jack Yoest

      Ryan, a terrific sports analogy: “There are things in a race that can disqualify you, but any swimmer will tell you that these race errors don’t give an advantage if broken. They actually slow you down.”

      Well said,
      Jack

  133. In the world today people are always trying to get one over on each other, they are always looking to bend the rules or cheat to see short term results. But most people will agree that whenever we start bending and breaking these rules we are always thinking about how it will end. Many people out there work hard to try and find a cheat or a new way to get around some regulation, but maybe instead of working towards the wrong we can work towards the right. If we spend time and efforts into product development and research things like that we can better our company both monetarily and morally. Teaching a team of accountants how to fib the numbers on a spread sheet might benefit you now, but in the long run you are going to want real numbers and real solutions to money being lost. Having a business that runs off the backbone of lies and cheats is like rolling a snowball down a hill, it might make it all the way down but you really don’t know if will collapse once the snowball has gained enough traction.

    • Jack Yoest

      Connor, your viewpoint should be the philosophy of every CEO — that is being able to see to a long horizon. The best managers think years ahead. These managers might also think ahead through this veil of tears into eternity.

      Cheers,
      Jack

      • Joseph Lasaracino

        Conor, I completely agree with your analogy. Taking shorts cuts to better yourself is never the answer. Companies should be proud of the work they accomplish and performance should be a mirror concerning moral standards.

  134. I really enjoyed this article, because I could relate to both sides. Growing up and being in a sports family, I was taught all of the same things those men said in the article in how to go about when playing sports. But the one thing I was never taught was to cheat and if you want to get an advantage on your opponent, you had to use your strength to their weaknesses and the same thing goes for business. If you are marketing a product and the rival company is trying to sell the same product you are going to want to find ways that will give you the advantages over them. You don’t want to steal money or ruin someone you play that person or company fair and square.

  135. Joseph Lasaracino

    In any sporting event the ultimate goal is to win, and when winning becomes a desire one will do anything to achieve success. The mindset of winning forces the individual to focus so hard that people are willing to make risks. In sports its one thing to be strategic and aggressive towards your opponents, but cheating formulates a stigma that is unjust. The ramifications for cheating have serious consequences, and we witness this in sports with performance enhancement and even in the Tom Brady case. Just like in sports, cheating is never ethical in the business world. Bending the rules just a tab still goes to show that you are held accountable for your actions.

  136. The thing with teaching a kid to achieve his/her goal through any means necessary is that it has adverse affects in the long term. The punishment for cheating (fouling) in a sporting event is much smaller than for cheating in the business world. So, children who learns to regularly “bend the rules” to win at a younger age are more likely to partake in corruption at an older age when the actions have a greater repercussion than just a minute in the penalty box. Another thing is the personal impact, as stated in module 1.2, unethical decision-making has severe consequences to ones family-life and personal healthy.

    • Jack Yoest

      Dustin, good observation — just as not getting caught might continue unethical behavior — getting caught by the referee should be a correction in both the game and life.

      Well said,
      Jack

  137. Caroline Eldridge

    I like your realization at the end, that cheating may produce quick results, but it will note produce long-term success. I think that is very important to keep in mind especially when beginning a career. Keeping with your basketball example, teaching someone to cheat might help the child play in the game, but when it comes to making the best teams and making a successful career out of basketball, he will have to train long hours to become good at shooting, passing, and dribbling to do well in tryouts. Having an honestly good game gets you far in the basketball world and I believe, as your article shows, the same goes for business. Maintaining honesty and good business practices, will help you go far.

    • Jack Yoest

      Caroline, a well crafted comment. You are right: in starting a business as in parenting, Proverbs 22:6 reminds us, “Start children off on the way they should go,
      and even when they are old they will not turn from it.”
      Cheers,
      Jack

  138. Renee Bilodeau

    Very interesting read! As a basketball enthusiast myself, I was taught how to “bend the rules” in sports; it only seemed natural since everyone else was doing it. However, the main goal in mind was to get as many points needed to win the game (in the business world, how to maximize profits). Teaching younger kids that doing whatever is necessary to win is obviously not the correct way, but nonetheless it happens. As it is in the business world, it is hard to compete with people who bend the rules in their favor. It seems only natural to participate in the same behavior because “everyone is doing it”. Although in the short term, those who bend the rules get ahead, they also suffer the consequences of their actions. It is the best practice to be honest and fair, even if the short-term profits are not as ‘profitable’.

    • Jack Yoest

      Renee, well said — Is the intent behind bending law the same as breaking the law? There is a Bible verse that may point the marketing manager in a small business — or large — “I have the right to do anything,” you say—but not everything is beneficial. “I have the right to do anything”—but not everything is constructive” (from 1 Corinthians 10:23)

      Best,
      Jack

  139. It is no question that gamesmanship and other forms of cheating can definitely give a team the advantage during a sports game. However, these things still do not guarantee a victory. At the end of the day it typically comes down to which team has better teamwork and skill. I believe this is the same in the business world.

    Companies that cut corners and break whatever rules they can probably often gain an advantage over their markets. However, these advantages do nothing if the business doesn’t have the proper foundations and principles in place to make the business successful in the first place. That being said, rather than focusing your energy on teaching employees how to cheat and bend the rules, you should focus your time on teaching them how to do things the right way in the first place. This can often lead to more success and enhanced business performance and customer satisfaction. Not to mention there is an inherent risk with cheating, in the business world especially, and it can often lead to severe penalties.

  140. Mary Margaret Sheridan

    I like this article because it makes you think about how something like teaching a child how to throw an elbow in a basketball game might influence their later actions. Whether you’re playing in little league or in the “big leagues,” in the business world, you will want to get a competitive edge. You want to find a way to stand out from and surpass your competitors. While you may get away with a little cheating when the referee isn’t looking, it’s still cheating. I think that the best practice is to find a way to outdo your competitors without relying on cheating. This makes you work harder to beat your competitor even if they’re the one throwing elbows.

  141. Jack Yoest

    Mary Margaret, Very good — getting away with an infraction doesn’t mean that there was no wrong doing. “No Blood; no foul,” might be an unfortunate standard.

    Cheers,
    Jack

  142. After reading this article, I think that it had some very interesting points. I think that it was interesting when it mentioned that we rarely see a woman in jail for white collard crimes compared to the amount of men.

    Growing up with sports, since I was first born until college I saw the good, the bad, and the ugly when it came to gaining the competitive edge. I’ve lost friendships due to lack of character displayed through questionable training efforts. I also have made some of my best friends in my life from the weight room and on various teams throughout the years. The reason sports are so great is because they show a person’s true character. The friends that I have lost due to sports were not because I was angered by their desire to win… The reason I have ended friendships is because I know cheating doesn’t just stop once your off the field. In life either you are a cheater, or you’re not. If you’re willing to cheat yourself on the field or in the weight room what’s to say you won’t cheat in the office? on your spouse? or really in any aspect of life. True personal character runs through all aspects of one’s life. In competition it shows a person’s true character

  143. I’ve grown up playing sports my whole and after reading this article it made me think about how sports and business have some things in common. After spending so many years playing sports I’ve come to understand the importance of gamesmanship and having character whether it be during practice or a game. Cheating is similar in both the business world and the world of sports in that people try to take short cuts in order to reach a goal or meet an end. Although it may seem like the easiest and quickest option at the time, cheating will never result in a victory because you did not achieve your goal using teamwork and your personal skills.
    When people cut corners they may think that they are doing it discreetly and under the radar, however everyone around always finds out one way or another. Cheating not only effects yourself but it plays a huge impact on coworkers, teammates, etc.

  144. I have to say that I got some good laughs from this article. I agree that cheaters never win. I don’t think that most professional athletes, or really any athletes that I know would say that sports taught them to cheat. I’ve been playing sports my entire life and I never thought about cheating. My prerogative was to alway better my game. I tried my best to perform at the highest level I could. I never played unfair or took cheap shots. Although, I’ve played against many people who have. Nobody respects a cheater or wants to be associated with them. Cheating is immoral and unjust. A perfect example of a cheating scandal was the New Orleans Saints targeting scandal a few years ago. Players on the Saints were getting rewarded bonuses for laying cheap hits on opposing players and injuring them. This was a huge ordeal as many people ended up being fired. These actions were unjust and especially immoral. Nobody respects a cheater. Being honest can go a long way especially in business. You’re more likely to close a deal if you tell the whole truth, are transparent and lead people to trust you. Also, an honest person is generally just views as a better person. Nobody likes being lied to.

  145. The dichotomy between winning and cheating is something that should be emphasized much more in our society, in sports, business and life. The thing about cheating is that you don’t win the game, you win the game you have created for yourself. And when you don’t play the game, as intended, you gain none of the benefits that it has to offer. Look at the different responses between those that cheated and those that played the honest game. The honest players improved themselves as people, learning life lessons like leadership, constructive criticism, sportsmanship, etc. In future matches those who followed the rules will be able to dominate the cheating players, because the honest players learned to play the game and the cheaters learned to cheat. So who really wins in the long term? The honest players who improved their ability instead of reducing the standards to their short term interests.

  146. I enjoy the line “Cheaters never win. Winners never cheat.” When you win by cheating, whether in sports or business, the success is typically short-lived. For example, the superbowl of 2015 was “won” by the Patriots. However, shortly after their victory, it was revealed that the game balls had been deflated. The entire team’s integrity was subjected to suspicion and skepticism. Many people believed that there should be serious penalties, along with their title being revoked. Tom Brady, their star athlete, was especially questioned. In a matter of days, his name, as well as the reputation of the entire establishment had been tarnished. The same goes for being dishonest in business. Sure, for the moment you may enjoy an increase in profit. However, when you get caught, you not only lose your wealth, but also your stature as well.

  147. A person’s integrity is an issue in any profession, be it business or non-business related. I will criticize the article on the generalization that women do not cheat because there are always women that cheat. Especially, if they believe that cheating will put them on the same level as their male co-workers. Cheaters are out there but that only makes it more important to raise a generation of people who understand ethics and have a strong moral compass. While this sense of right and wrong can be taught at a young age, it is also important for professors to incorporate a strong set of morals into their curriculum to get students thinking.

  148. Jack Yoest

    Katie, You are right: we all fall short of the Glory of our Creator — and both men and women are capable of the most grievous transgressions.

    However, most whistle blowers who step-up to expose unethical or illegal behavior, are women. This is the virtue of Justice — See https://twitter.com/JackYoest/status/768913578921369600

    An outstanding analysis,
    Jack

  149. Aubrey Gierlatowicz

    There was one main thought that irked me throughout this piece: how can you tell a cheater apart from the rest? Whether it is on the basketball court or in the business world one should know the difference between right and wrong. Unfortunately some individuals lack morals and I question how they will continue on successfully in life if all they know is cheating? It is true that children develop moral principles by their environment and peers. As I watch children grow up in this society (both male and female), they often are swayed by the thoughts of others. This influence is often seen through activities such as sports. If your coach or father tells you to cheat, why wouldn’t you? It is giving you the okay to do something you were always told was wrong. It’s exciting. However, this bad habit can progress to something far worse in later life. That being said it needs to be stopped during childhood before it becomes a common occurrence. When a cheater wins, he continues to use his ‘powers’. This is not success, it is a lack of confidence and morals. Great article!

  150. Jack Yoest

    Aubrey, you are on to something — at the point of sale, it is often difficult to tell the difference between a good man or bad.

    This is why salesmen are so mistrusted — Some will use the talent/practice of persuasion to manipulate against the interest of the client/customer.

    See https://twitter.com/JackYoest/status/769158659330887681

    Well done,
    Jack

  151. It is funny how an everyday activity like playing basketball in the backyard relates so well to the business word. In basketball, there are ways to break the rules and not get caught (grab a jersey, throw an elbow when the ref is turned around, etc.). In business, there are also ways to break the rules and not get caught (add another zero where it doesn’t belong, shred a document with important information, disrespect your co-workers, etc.). Not getting caught does not make your actions acceptable. Cheating with “special moves” in a recreational game like basketball can create cheating habits that transfer to all aspects of life. Breaking the rules not only hurts yourself and questions your morals and integrity, but it also hurts your teammates, co-workers, and organization. The Busch School at CUA focuses on being a “force for good” in business and that all starts with doing good, even with the temptations of “special moves” that surround us daily.

    Great article with great life lessons. Thanks!

  152. I found this article very interesting. I grew up playing a lot of sports—swimming, tennis, basketball, track, soccer—and my coaches always stressed the importance of good sportsmanship, meaning absolutely no cheating. Of course, all of these teams were all female teams. From what I have heard about the male sports teams was that they encouraged doing “whatever it takes”, which also encourages cheating. In the business world, in order to be ethical and fair, it is important not to cheat or lie, even if it slows you down or even prevents you from moving forward at all. Because of what we see in sports, women are more likely to be more trustworthy in the business world, because they are not as prone to cheating as men appear to be.

  153. Nikolai Senchenko

    It is important to have good character for people to have an understanding of how customer service can prosper well. Strong relationships make it easy to develop proper character and use correct virtues. It is important to act in an ethical manner to create a good relationship with the consumer to have a reputation of good customer service. Fairness is a social custom and shows good judgement. Proper customer service gives purchasers engagement and motivation to buy products. Social responsibility and ethics in business are needed as a strategy of good customer interaction in order to build a successful brand and create a solid reputation.

  154. Michelle Bouchard

    The business world presents its inhabitants with many opportunities to decide between ethical choices and unethical ones. It is unfortunate that so often the unethical choices are made. I found the analysis of the contrast between men and women in the business world to be extremely interesting and led me to wonder why that is. Women have surely broken many barriers when it comes to positions of authority in business. Since men and women ultimately hold many of the same positions, it cannot be the job precipitates the unethical decision. Instead, it must have something to do with the character of the person or, in this case, demographic. Men likely grow up with a more competitive nature, whether that be from sports or not, and this could be the origin of their riskier behavior in the business world.

  155. Over the summer I was working with a defense contractor near my home town and integrity was a trait they strive for. Like was mentioned above, one does not want to end up in prison. Granted, when working with government contracts there is far less room for error and far more at stake for failing to hold up ones own integrity. Even when not working with the government, all steps possible should be taken to uphold ones integrity.

    If everyone suddenly decided that they should cheat because everyone else cheats, we would be left with quite a large problem. As the quote above by Bill Maher says “When we disregard the rules altogether we get anarchy or, worse yet, Enron.”

  156. This article was very interesting. I have done sports all my life and have always been apart of a team. Sports and businesses can definitely relate to each other, especially when it comes to making tough decisions and making sure it is an honest one. Personally, I never see a point in cheating whether it is in school, a business, or a sport. In the moment it may work in your favor, but the long term goal will never end well. It is very important to stay honest with yourself and your coworkers or teammates because that is when a great and successful result will form.

  157. I found this article interesting. I played sports growing up, and I never heard my coach tell me to cheat to get ahead in the game. They taught me to play the game fairly because it reflects you as a player and as a person. I see how coaches make the strategy to cheat to get to the end goal; to win. The coaches can be put in the position to play fairly and lose or cheat and win. When the pressure is on, it is easier to say to cheat and win than it is to lose. No one likes to lose. In the business world, cheating and being unethical could seem good at first, but in the long run, it can have bad consequences.

  158. There’s no way to completely rid this world of cheaters, however, it is possible to practice morals and ethics to raise a generation built on honesty and character. It’s hard to fix what has been taught to some people – to cheat in order to get ahead. It’s something that they’ve been practicing for years and has been integrated into their decision-making and actions. They think it isn’t a big deal, that everyone does it. But it’s important to bring awareness to the issue and state that it is a big deal and it can hurt those around you. There are consequences for cheating that not only affect the doer but also those around them.

  159. Nicolette Crisalli

    Cheaters never win and winners never cheat. My mom used to say that to me all the time growing up playing sports or even when I would tell her stories in elementary school about how my friends and I took the easy way out during a homework assignment or something. I play lacrosse and one summer we had just enough people to play the game, it was hot and we were exhausted. Our coach would encourage us to push the girls in the midfield to get a couple extra steps on them and we could take a breath. So it was funny reading this article because when he told us that we were all shocked like, “what you want us to cheat?!” It is so right seeing how each gender reacts to cheating. I definitely do not believe in cheating and don’t ever think anyone should take the easy way out by cheating in business… sports… or life.

  160. I have played sports throughout my whole life, so from an insider perspective, cheating is everywhere. Whether its modifying equipment to put you at an advantage, or bribing referees to officiate with a bias in your favor, cheating is very common. In athletics, cheating is often encouraged and even anticipated. This is because of the competitive nature of athletics. However, cheating in the similarly competitive business world is not necessarily held at the same regard. In sports, the outcome is simple, one team or individual wins while the other loses. At most levels of sports, except professional, there is no consequence for losing, and no reward for winning. In business, you deal directly with people, and their money, and the outcome is not the same as in sports. If you lose in business, you lose your money, which will affect every aspect of your life. So overall, i think cheating in sports is condoned, while frowned upon in the business world because of the repercussions.

  161. i was intrigued at the article at first glance because of the sports relationship. Its not as much as to not be bad as it is to be good. Cheating may be a little different than bending the rules. Bending the rules to a degree may even be the smarter choice to make. Im not saying i condone cheating or even look at it as an easier way to accomplish something but if there are things that you can do to gain a competitive advantage i believe it is the smart choice. As an athlete myself you are never taught to cheat but you do things that you can get away with to gain an advantage. i think the same thing applies to business , you never do anything illegal but you do things to gain an upper hand on your competitors. Also a key component in our society is seeing others do something. If your competitors are doing things to gain an advantage on you , you are inclined to do the same and so on and so fourth. As humans we do things so we can accomplish our goals faster. With this ideology i dont think “bending the rules” will ever dissipate.

  162. Jack Yoest

    Cai Li, well said — coaches are often our first role models to encourage virtuous behavior — for habits that will last a life-time

    Cheers,
    Jack

  163. Caroline Eldridge

    I think it is important to realize the end goal in every situation. For basketball and business, it comes down to a choice between winning and having integrity. Ultimately it is possible to have both, but many people and businesses are under the false assumption that cheating is necessary to winning. Playing the game fairly makes winning even better because one will not only succeed, but he will be given the tools to succeed in the future. By exemplifying integrity in business and basketball, people are taught the proper tools to succeeding and will be able to use those tools throughout their lives to make a positive impact in the world by winning with integrity.

  164. Being raised Catholic I was always taught cheating is wrong no matter what. There should be no reason that one ever needs to cheat off someone else or cheat in order to better them self. Growing up playing sports I definitely see reasons why some would say cheating enables you to win a game or a match but that does not mean you are the most equipped or the best. In order to become better and grow, one needs to practice and try, cheating will not enable you to do this. Therefore, holding you back in the long run. I believe cheating not only is wrong but is also unfair to yourself and others.

  165. I found this article to be very interesting in relating sports to business. In a number of classes I have previously taken at CUA, we discussed business ethics and maximizing profit, however doing so in the right way. Rather than cheating your way to the top, it is more rewarding and a larger number of loyal clients and employees will be gained by doing business honestly. Though many wealthy people have became successful through lies and cheating, they have built a bad reputation for themselves in the process. Not only do they have bad reputations, but some face serious consequences. Cheating is never beneficial in the long run, though it may seem like a good idea. Cheating is the easy way out for those who don’t feel like trying, and it hurts not only the person cheating but those involved whether it be a sports game or business transaction.

  166. Vincent Rocco Mandes

    In business, it’s important to favor long-term over short-term results. After all, long-term results ensure the continued sustainability and prosperity of the company. Long-term results require a solid foundation, both in the way the company is organized and the principles the company is organized around. If ethics are left out of a company’s decision-making processes, it is bound to cut corners for the sake of profit maximization in the short-term, much like players on a team are willing to go against the rules when the referee isn’t looking for the sake of winning the game. The players may get away with it, but every time they cheat, they put their team at risk of being penalized, or even worse, disqualified. By not instilling ethics into decision-making processes for the sake of short-term gains, business leaders put their companies at the same kind of risk. Risk can be a good thing when properly analyzed because it offers businesses the chance to grow quickly and exponentially, but risks that go against ethics or the law are never worth it for the sake of the company or its ability to increase profit. A team of players can’t win a game if they’ve been kicked out of it or penalized beyond the point-of-no-return. By the same token, a company cannot thrive if it exercises unethical business practices that are eventually exposed. I think if you don’t like the rules of the game, change them, don’t tip-toe around them.

  167. Elizabeth Gittings

    Cheating in the sports world has become very prevalent and although a majority of the time it gets swept under the rug, it doesn’t go unnoticed. As a past basketball player, when I think of “flopping” and other little things we did to get the call; cheating does not come to mind as a word. Yet the more I ponder the word, it fits completely. The actions being made are cheating, but in a way that one doesn’t normally think while in action and striving for a goal. I do agree that females tend to be more against cheating and promote a straight forward hard working ethic. With the short history of working jobs similar to those of males and the rights that we hold, there is no room for small error and the thought of getting caught is horrific. In my past I have brought cheating up to males and they have no issue with the action. I have even had a male say that cheating is how to achieve success. That there is no time to put the effort into it when someone else has already done it. Business should not be done like this. Every man or woman I believe should work hard for what they achieve and get what they deserve. Business is always changing especially today and causes people to learn and comprehend the new changes on a daily basis. Cheating is just being lazy and no one can cheat their way out of the business world forever.

  168. Just like the article says “games end” but even if they end it’s not worth the risk of cheating or doing something desieving so things can go in your favor. If we treat running a business like a playing a game and try to cheat, the business is going to end because in the end, one way or another, we’re going to get caught. We can take for example the two guys that ran a weapon business and tried to sell old Chinese weapons to the US Army thinking that they weren’t going to get caught and they would make billions of dollars but in the end they did and had to do jail time. If you are a smart business owner you would know what type of risk is a smart one that in the end would benefit and profit your business.

  169. In the article it is mentioned, “owners should have long-term focus”. It was embedded in my character at an early age that you must always follow the rules. This summer I graduated from Marine Corps OCS and one of the many points the instructors drilled into my mind was the importance of integrity. Doing the right thing even when no one is watching was instilled in every candidates’ character. Every decision you make affects your future and those around you. Cheating in any form will come back to you. Business is about advancing the world, providing people with their needs, and looking out for fellow employees in the best and most honest manner.

  170. I enjoyed the beginning of the article and how it used the simple idea of a father teaching his son sports to illustrate a larger theme of whether or not ethical business practices are put into place and maintained. Much like the father teaching the son how to “foul in basketball” without being caught, many in the business world are all too often caught up in the temptation to take up certain practices which are not ethical and unfortunately many times are flat out illegal. People think that they can cut corners wherever and whenever they want and not be caught, however, this is not the case. Many of these people are subsequently caught and lose much of what they had.

    These people are often caught by “mom” or a whistle blower, someone who is simply pointing out that unethical practices are being employed to achieve an unfair advantage or potentially harm other people through these practices. Whistle blowers can provide a “check and balance” of sorts which allows business to be monitored from their own employees and when there is any unethical practices take action and call the practices out for what they are.

    Great, quick read!

  171. This was a very interesting article, that made a lot of good points. The point that I found most interesting is how men are a lot more likely to cheat or attempt to cheat in both sports and business than women are. When you watch athletic events, such in the Olympics, the men’s sports are a lot more physical then the women’s sports and there is also a lot more action happening behind the field of play/referees sight. When looking at women’s sports there is always a lot more skill in what they do, compared to men’s sports where there is a lot more emphasis put on pyhiscally out doing your competition which could lead itself to people cheating. I think the same goes for business, where men aren’t necessarily trying to physically out do eachother but there is competition, and thus the opportunity to cheat to get ahead of others.

  172. I have also played sports most of my life. When playing sports your goal is to win the game, the responsibility of the players on the team is to do whatever is needed in order to do so. Soccer is played on a larger field than most sports. With twenty-two players on the field and only one center referee it is impossible for the referee to see everything that occurs during the play of the game. When I played soccer some of the players on my team would use cheating to their advantage however it was not looked at as a wrongdoing, it was viewed as a skill that was obtained.

    Similar to business a company might have an annual goal in which it is the employee’s job to do whatever it takes in order to achieve that goal by the end of the year. As an employee you will be faced with many decisions regarding which path to take. Either you view bending the rules slightly to achieve a goal as cheating or you can view it as something in which must be done in order to achieve set goals.

  173. I believe that this article touches on a large issue that people growing up in today’s society are struggling with. There is so much pressure to succeed no matter what, that kids are sacrificing their character and integrity in order to win. While its obviously important to strive to be the best, if that entails cheating or cheap shots, is it really the best thing to win? Whether it be in business or sports, the goal is to strive for excellence while keeping one’s character in tact. After achieving your goal, if you can’t look in the mirror at the end of the day, was the success really worth it?

  174. I’ve grown up playing sports my entire life and still do. I have seen teams and players cheat many times but many also play by the rules. In my opinion, the teams that do cheat are often seen as the lesser team even if they do end up winning because they didn’t carry themselves in a respectable way. I thought this article was very interesting because there is a distinct similarity between sports and businesses that I never saw before. I definitely do think there could be some cheating in both sports and in the business world but again, those people are seen as disrespectful and unappreciative of the “game” they are able to participate in.

  175. Christina Rimbey

    I have played sports for much of my life, and though we are taught to try hard to win, we are also told to respect the rules of the game. Are you really a good player if the only way you can win is by cheating?
    The same way of thinking can be applied to business. Are you really successful in the business world if they only way you come out of head is buy bending laws and working around parameters? True success comes from hard work and determination. If you are really good at what you do and innovative with new ideas, you should not have to bend the rules to succeed.

  176. Abigail Sullivan

    I think it’s interesting that this idea of cheating is something that was only instilled in men rather than women considering both genders participate in athletics. If male athletes are taught to cheat, why aren’t women? Nevertheless, comparing sports and business seems to be sensible. Not in the sense that business men and women should cheat in order to be successful, but that both sports and business have the same end game, winning. All businesses want to be number one in their industry. All sports teams want to be number one in their league. Both businesses and sports teams get to the top through hard work, practicing to perfect certain skills, and putting their heads down and working hard. The famous saying in the article “Cheaters never win and winners never cheat” is something that everyone should stick by and follow. Cheating may seem to provide advancement in your industry, but in the end, the truth will be known. It could lead to something as catastrophic as the Enron situation, or could lead to a warning and slap on the wrist. Cheating isn’t the answer. Hard work and honest, ethical behaviors are instilled in the truly successful and intelligent people. So if women were taught not to cheat, perhaps the article is right, let the women take a chance at being in charge and see how far honest work can take a company.

  177. Anthony Spadaccini

    After reading the article it immediately made me think of my childhood playing sports. From basketball to baseball to football and so on, there are always the kids who have done this, and it has never really struck me until now. They are compromising their growth and development as a player to trick the referee into thinking another athlete has done something wrong. This is not the only cheating in youth sports. The coaches in youth sports never think about child development, and making the athlete better for the next level of play, rather how to win and skirt around the rules. Cheating will always be allowed in youth sports because most of the people involved are about the money, and not about the athlete.

  178. This article touches on one of the major differences between athletics and business. It revolves around the idea that business is “long term” and people that run businesses should be thinking about how they can benefit themselves later in life. As an athlete, I approach my games with the mindset that I am going to give it my all at that exact moment. There isn’t a thought about how I will benefit myself in the future. In the business world overnight success isn’t that common unless it comes from cheating or unethical behavior. Long term growth is the more common success that business owners seek. In sports athletes worry about how their team is doing in the present. Nobody cares how the team is going to do in 10 or 20 years. This idea shows the fine line between athletics and business.

  179. Success is the ultimate goal of those who compete in both the business world and on the fields of play. How people go about obtaining that success, however, determines the character and integrity of that said person. A motivational speaker by the name of Lee Rubin came and spoke to the football team several days ago after our practice. Lee is a former Penn State football player and one of the things he told us was to “stop looking for an edge if you’re not willing to do the basics.” How could you possibly expect to succeed if you can’t do the little things right? This article draws a fine line between those who work hard and earn success, and those who don’t. While I do believe that cheaters never win and winners never cheat, It is a harsh reality in todays day and age for people in sports and business to cheat and cut corners in order to gain an unfair advantage in the journey towards success and can get away with it. At the end of the day you have to look at yourself in the mirror and ask yourself, “have I done all i could to succeed today?” Those who work hard and sacrifice things in order to succeed will be able to rest easy knowing that they did what they needed to do. Those who didn’t may be tolerant of it now, but it will eventually come back to haunt them.

  180. I really like how you tied together the lessons someone might learn in sports with how those lessons can be applied to everyday life. I have been playing baseball my entire life and have learned many valuable lessons that have helped shape who I am as a person. It is natural when competing for everyone on the field to be doing whatever they can to have a competitive edge over their opponents; however, I have seen how this competitive edge can easily turn into cheating. For example, many baseball pitchers will put some pine-tar or some other sort of sticky substance inside their gloves so that they can grip the ball more easily. This is technically cheating when it comes to the rules of baseball, but since practically every professional pitcher is doing this, you would be at a disadvantage not to if you wanted to compete at the professional level. In essence, the article showed how social norms have put the people who obey certain rules at a disadvantage especially in a competitive atmosphere.

  181. Cheating is and will always be a major part of our world, whether in sports or the business world. As someone who has both played and, more fervently, watched sports my entire life I have seen this both first and second hand. Cheating, however, can and will never be a formidable way to build a business model or to put together a dominant sports dynasty. In the short term, yes, cheating can be quite profitable but will sooner or later catch up to you, just ask Bernie Madoff or Jordan Belfort. Beyond the belief of being punished sooner or later for cheating there is the fact that many people will know what unethical actions you are doing, whether they are your teammate or rival, or a co-worker, your reputation will suffer greatly. So far, I’ve really only stated that cheating isn’t worth it because you’ll get caught. This should be besides the point. The bottom line is that cheating is ethically wrong and compromising your morals. Is the trophy on your desk worth knowing that you cheated a harder working, more deserving, and more talented person? The trophy will become hollow and insignificant, and by surrounding yourself with hollow victories you will never grow as a person. Not only will you get caught cheating but you are cheating yourself out of a meaningful life.

  182. As an avid sports fan and athlete, I enjoyed watching the Olympics. This past summer in Rio, several athletes tested positive for performance enhancers. One of the stories that received the most coverage involved a Russian swimmer versus the United States’ very own Lilly King. Despite facing “cheaters,” King’s natural ability and hard work prevailed. In a world in which cheating is prevalent, it proves that there is no short cut to the top of the podium. This idea directly correlates from the pool to the business meeting. Whereas it may seem easier to “bend” the rules, perseverance to commit oneself to a life of good demands and merits more respect.

  183. I have grown up playing football and I still play. In football, cheating happens, sometimes often. However, many plays in which cheating is involved, are because of an emotional counterpart. It stems from getting too emotional, and then reacting too aggressively and losing composure. This type of behavior causes a penalty, which results in the other team having an advantage. This can be translated into the world of business because if someone gets too emotionally involved, they could react in a negative way, potentially by cheating. That reaction could cause the business to be even further away from its goals.

  184. This article was pretty relatable from the start. Whether it be sports, school work, or your business, we are always looking for ways to push the boundaries a bit. As a larger society, we have created almost like a “buffer zone”. You have the line, then the buffer zone and once you pass the buffer zone, you’re clearly out of line and the alarm sounds, even though you had already pushed the boundaries. Now everyone after Generation Y is always looking for an easier, faster, and simpler way of getting something done. This could be slyly touching an opponent’s arm in basketball or cutting corners on a financial analysis report. Now we as humans are imperfect, so we will come to like how fast and easily getting the job done and continue doing it. It won’t be till we get caught, like Enron. Unfortunately, now with government regulation, it is becoming more beneficial for companies and employees, more than ever, to push boundaries.

  185. I really like how this article shows how lessons in athletics can directly correlate with the realities of the business world and how it operates. This article makes it clear, however, that although business and athletics are alike in many ways, there are quite different in regards to possible results and outcomes. In athletics, there is more of a short-term presence of mind, rather than a long-term like there is in the business world. This is because each team is expected to reach their highest levels of success in short time periods, where as business are expected to grow over what can seem like an uncertain amount of years. When cheating comes into play, there is also quite the difference between athletics and business, shown by the quote from the article that says, “I’m not worried about a penalty box – I’m worried about the penitentiary”, which is a pretty self-explanatory quote. Although today, many people have gotten away with cheating, it still does not make it right in anyway, because those who cut corners, do not get the full experience of what it is like to truly earn and persevere for something they desire, which usually is most rewarding when done correctly, eliminating all worries and preparing one for all possible dilemmas and situations. So when I think about that, I truly believe that those who cheat, really never win.

  186. This article intrigues me greatly because it compares two very similar things that most people don’t realize are that similar. When hearing a comparison of business and sports, the similarity that is usually being mentioned is about teams and how being a “team player” is better in the end for everyone. However, this article comparing sports and business in a different and honest way opens up a whole new door for conversation. I think the saying “cheaters never win” reigns true in both business and sports mainly in a sense of integrity and character. People who are caught cheating or suspected of cheating are never thought of in the same way again. That alone is enough incentive to not cut corners.

  187. Cheating can be the absolute downfall for a business. If a business is found to be cheating or there is evidence found that the business has cheated in the past, the organization’s credibility will be questioned. Once the organization’s credibility is questioned the consumer base will shutter and the sales numbers will most likely decrease. Simply adhering to honest work practices can avoid all of the fallout from dishonest work practices.
    Honest work may not always be the easiest route, but in the end it is something that will stand up to even the hardest of speculation.

  188. This article has me thinking back to when I rowed in high school. I remember going past the starting a single stroke just to make sure our boat had the best advantage, every other boat did it too… its just part of the sport. We were thinking of the short-term goal: winning the race and getting that coveted gold metal. However, businesses must keep in mind the long-term goal: keeping their customers happy and making money. If businesses find little ways to cheat their customers will be the ones who get hurt and in the long run the business will lose money.

  189. This is a very interesting read. There are many parallels that one can draw between the ethics in both business and sports. Sports teaches us at even from a fairly young age how to be ethical and fair to everyone playing the game, I believe that this is the starting foundation for anyone who pursues a career in every field of study or vocation. This article reminds me of something my high school soccer coach always used to harp at us “When you cheat, you not only cheat yourself of the rewards of the exercise, but you also cheat your teammates out of valuable practice.” This also rings true for business, when you cheat in the business world you not only cheat yourself, but you’re being truly dishonest with your coworkers and customers. This could certainly have a major impact on future business deals, and your bottom line. It is important from the very start of an organized sport, or activity that we instill and reinforce the core values of ethical behavior as a solid foundation for the future.

  190. Sure, business is just like an athletic sport. Sports come with a set of rules that make the game fair. In some ways, business does too. But, not everyone will follow the rules, causing an uproar in either field. Those people who cheat to win because the success of winning outweighs a loss don’t see the true meaning of the sport. In fact, they are only damaging their ethics toward the sport and life beyond the sport. If a player takes what he/she learns on the field and transports that knowledge to the business setting, they can get a large penalty. Staying true to yourself and your teammates is the best game plan in the end for both the business world and on the field. Because winning fair beats winning by cheating.

  191. This article features a great lesson that can apply in many situations, but especially in the business world. “Cheaters never win. Winners never cheat.” I have seen multiple examples of people taking short cuts or cheating in subtle ways in internships and jobs, and I have not even had a full time, 9-5 job yet. Children are being taught ways to cheat and bend the rules at a young age while playing sports, and this habit can continue when they are teenagers and adults. If a referee does not catch a kid pull another kid’s jersey during a game, then maybe their boss will not see them bend the rules on a project before a board meeting. This is just one of the bad inclinations that can come from cheating and bending the rules when you think no one is watching or you will not get caught.

  192. Cheaters’ strength is to cheat without being caught. In business, some business partners, managers, and CEOs force numbers and bend rules because they think they will not be caught. The worse part of it is that the people who cheat are aware of ethics, they know they are harming others but still do it anyway; the business professor confirmed that he teaches ethics, he knows what is good or bad, but he still cheat. It is hard to explain how two people work for the same company and one is a millionaire and the other cannot even afford a living.

  193. I found this article to be quite interesting because I never really compared the two (Business and Sports) and thought of them as similar until now. I have played sports my whole life and being a female can honestly say I don’t recall every being taught how to cheat in sports. I can relate to sports how I would a business with rules and regulations that must be followed in order to achieve the end goal… to win or profit. In this article, Charmaine seems to be very insightful on what it takes to run a good business, honesty. I feel that businesses should be run honestly by following the rules but allowing for creativity in the business as you would in a sport. For example trying a new play that is still in line with the rules.

    Overall I found this article very insightful and would recommend it to other students that enjoy sports and can relate.

  194. Cheating is ethically and morally wrong in all situation in life. At a young age, we are first encountered with cheating in activities such as sports games. If a teammate does something wrong during the game a referee or their coach will reprimand them for their actions, and their piers will see the consequences of their wrong doings. As we get older, some teammates will still cheat in order to win. These actions will bear a greater toll on the team, by preventing them from victory, or having them disqualified from their conference. This same situation of risking a cheating move in order to gain victory faster applies in the real world of business. It is commonly seen that a Business CEO will make a wrong move for their firm in order to get ahead. But in doing so, they cost the company way more than if their leader had made the ethical decision of basing their decisions off of what is best for the company as a whole. Being taught business ethics is an important tool to use, and is what can separate a good boss from a great boss.

  195. I have played sports all my life and cheating has always been part of the game, from what I can remember I personally have never cheated. I do not cheat because I have respect for the game and want to earn things fair and square and if I do cheat I am in jeopardy of loosing all that Ive worked for and I could negatively affect my team. If you do cheat that shows to me that you are a coward and do not want to put in the hard work to either be the football player you or be the best sales associate at your job.

    Cheating is morally and ethical wrong, you are breaking the rules trying to benefit yourself which can cause to harm others. “cheaters never win”

  196. Sports and business share many things and being trustworthy is one of them. Cheating in sports makes the game without taste. Also in business cheating or being immoral will always somehow be bad even if it looks like its not. I personally played soccer in high school and cheating was not something we tolerated. Cheating is a very selfish act because the cheater is getting what someone else deserves.

  197. I think the central problem that the world faces is just how easy it is to cheat. It’s sure as heck not easy to recover from being found out as a cheater, but the way into cheating in the first place is just so available and then it’s a slippery slope that only leans down. We need to get to people, as CUA is trying to do with our business school, before they enter the world of business and advise them on how to be honest, but at the same time successful.

  198. What I found most interesting about this article is that so many people who are supposed to be well-respecting– professional athletes and businesspeople, are those who treat cheating as a viable plan for success. Learning how to “bend the rules” should not be something that is taught as a necessity in our private lives, and particularly not in universities. True success and fulfillment come from a job well done with an honest heart. This is the reason I chose to attend Catholic University, because we are taught that moral principles upheld, and a genuine will to do for others as we do business will bring about success. I love how you point out that cheating will not bring about any good.

  199. All I can say, is that I agree with Charmaine. Generally, Women do not cheat! It is not that we do not think outside the box, nor so much that we respect boundaries either. I honestly believe that some women just know what is good for them and stick with it. No matter how tempting it might be to cheat. It is in our human nature to try and always do the correct thing.

  200. Fernanda Jocelyn-Holt

    Cheating, whether done in the sports world or business world, is very unethical. People believe that cheating can make their work easier and less stressful, but that should not be the case. Success comes from you doing your own work and doing it the right way. Though it may be more difficult, more tiring, and more time consuming, doing the work you are supposed to do will get others to respect you and will lead you to more success.

  201. Being an athlete, I know how tempting it is to try and take shortcuts or cheat when the official is looking the other way. Although what I’ve figured out after all of these years of playing sports, if you spend more time practicing and focusing on actually putting in the time and the work you wouldn’t have to try and cheat to get your ideal outcome. This relates to the work world as well. If you took the time you spent trying to learn how to get around a certain thing you don’t want to do for your job, you probably would have learned how to do that certain thing in that time and wouldn’t have to worry about your boss finding out or you would feel accomplished instead of lousy after taking a shortcut.

  202. Reading this article made me think about the various similarities between sports and business. Teamwork is such a huge part of business in our world today, and what better way to learn teamwork than through sports? The vast majority of our population grows up during their youth, adolescence, and even adulthood playing team sports. Unfortunately, in our day and age, so much pressure is put on our youth the excel and succeed in athletics, which forces tough decisions at such a young age. It’s not always easy to keep up, and people are constantly forced to decide on the ethical decision of whether to cheat their way through or not. I have and continue to play sports throughout the entirety of my life, and I’ve always strongly believed in the phrase “cheaters never win” and I think that is especially important to remember growing up in these competitive environments. Sure, you can cheat to win a game at what could even be a recreational league game, but then you can easily fall into a habit of making similar decisions. This can easily affect you later on in life making important ethical decisions. It’s so integral to remember the importance of ethics, regardless of the weight of the decision being made.

  203. The sports world and the business world can be two very different places. In the sports world little gestures like tugging on someone’s shirt or showing a little physical action may result in a foul or they you may get away with it the game still moves on, it’s not the end of the world. It happens all the time in sports, it’s almost part of many of the games
    In the business acting unethically can be very dangerous, it isn’t just going to be a referee giving you a penalty and ten-yard loss just for holding, it will be your boss telling you that your fired or even worse the government. On top of this when one person acts unethically on your team it hurts the rest of the team that is playing by the books, only adding to their workload and that’s not fair by any means.

  204. I believe that cheating in the sports world and cheating in the business world are two completely different things. In sports it can be worth it to bend the rules even if you are caught. In football cheating can be a type of strategy, and being caught is even factored into that strategy. A corner back can decide that it may be worth it to hold the opposing wide receiver on most plays as long as they are only penalized on a small percentage of the plays. They decide that its worth it to get the penalty on one play if they are able to stop the receiver through holding on the next 5 plays, that is a calculated trade-off that is part of a player or team’s strategy.
    In the business world, however, bending the rules is not something that you just do knowing you will be caught anyway. You are not simply given a 15 yard penalty or a technical foul for committing fraud as part of a company. You can potentially ruin a company and put yourself in jail for the crimes you can commit while with a big corporation. For this reason, I do not believe it is fair to compare the cheating of an athlete to cheating or bending the rules in a big corporation. The sanctions and consequences are far too different to compare the two. In sports a team can still succeed after cheating and can factor cheating into their game-plan. However, in the business world, cheating can potentially ruin lives and companies after being caught and it can result in lengthy jail time.

  205. Professional and amateur athletes cheat all the time. Some athletes will do anything it takes to get ahead when in reality cheating gets you nowhere. I do not cheat and I do not respect people that win by cheating. It’s not right when somebody works hard, does a job with the utmost integrity but is not recognized for it because somebody who cheated won. Cheating may work today or tomorrow, but in the long run cheaters never win. I am a firm believer in doing things the right way and acting with integrity.

  206. While cheating may result in short term success in athletics and in business, it may have effects on your reputation as a person down the road. If a business does not get caught cheating, then other business might not want to work with them because of a poor reputation. Honest work is more satisfying and more productive, because it leads to a better development in athletic skills and in business. Bending the rules only works for the immediate future, and failing to learn properly will hinder long term success

  207. While it my be easy to take the easy way out to things in life, there is always a consequences. Every small cheat becomes something normal and later become a habit without even realizing it. I think that most of the time we start doing things preparing ourselves mentally to the fact that it might not be as bad as it looks. However, we start getting used to making these bad decisions that we become immune to them. In order to be successful, it is important to act in a moral and truthful way.

  208. Is it true that placing Women of honesty and high integrity in Leadership roles help strengthen businesses? In my opinion, placing a woman in the highest role in a firm can change things up and add diversity, but I’m not sure if it strength of a business dictates solely on gender differentiation. While there are more male leaders than female leaders in the business world, it doesn’t mean women are necessarily weaker than men. This just means that men are more confident in assuming the role of business executives than women are. The right woman with high integrity, high self-esteem, and outlasting determination can help create an inclusive environment within a business and support thinking in the long-term for the prosperity of a business. Women may not possess the same strengths and weaknesses as men do, but they can perform the same qualities as men in different ways in order to support a healthy and ethical business.

  209. Everyone tends to bend the rules in order to make life easier on themselves. However, I don’t think most people take time to recognize how even the smallest versions of cheating can impact the rest of their decisions. Once the habit of cheating is formed it becomes a vicious cycle that is difficult to break whether it’s in business or sports. In business it is imperative that we learn early on not to cheat or take short cuts. Not only could you go to jail or get fired, but you can also lose the respect of your boss and coworkers. I believe that more people should take more time to consider how their cheating will effect them in the long run.

  210. Cheaters’ strength is to cheat without being caught. In business, some business partners, managers, and CEOs force numbers and bend rules because they think they will not be caught. The worse part of it is that the people who cheat are aware of ethics, they know they are harming others but still do it anyway; the business professor confirmed that he teaches ethics, he knows what is good or bad, but he still cheat. It is hard to explain how two people work for the same company and one is a millionaire and the other cannot even afford a living.

  211. Andrea Perez-Hickman

    This article was interesting the way it explained cheating within a business through a sports analogy. In forensic accounting, you learn about the fraud triangle, which explains why fraud occurs. It is when a person has some type of pressure, has an opportunity, and can rationalize the act they are committing. In this case, we do not know what exactly the business is cheating on but let’s say it is changing some numbers around, you might not get caught at first but fraud is a slippery slope, you cheat once and get away with it so you think you can do it again so you do until the cheating becomes larger and larger and eventually you are caught. Cheating is unethical and I do not think it has anything to do with gender, it has to do with the fraud triangle.

  212. When comparing business and sports, I think cheating is never right. Cheating can either have some serious consequences or minor ones. Because you are unable to know the outcome of cheating during a sports game or in the business field, it is very frowned upon. Cheating your way to the top is nothing to be proud of (no gloating privileges). I believe karma will take action upon those who cheat. Business and sports have long term goals, whether it be to make it to the finals or acquiring a great business deal; cheating may be easy in the short run, but not easy in the long run.

  213. The moral of the story is that ethics are a part of life from your first basketball practice to your first business deal. We are expected to have ethics in everything we do. As a coach, the author did not see any wrong in teaching the hacks and skills of cheating, but Charmaine knew that these small hacks are relative the most unethical business. When she brought up the point about “Isn’t that how all those Tyco guys got started?” it put ethics into perspective and stayed how this task could effect the future decisions. Ethics are needed in business no matter what your religion is. We are taught the importance of this at the Catholic University of America.

  214. I agree that learning to cheat in sports, if handled incorrectly, can lead to believing that cheating is acceptable outside of sports. This mentality would lead to many problems and create a society based on cheating rather than merit. However, the statement “Cheaters never win. Winners never cheat.”, frankly, is false. If you were to watch any NFL game on sunday you will find several instances where a player cheats. It may not change the game drastically, but it does enough to enhance the players chances at winning. The only thing preventing the player from getting away with it are the referees. The refs are responsible for 22 men on the field. They cannot catch every instance of cheating. Sports are too highly competitive to ever rid them of cheating. People who are being paid millions of dollars to win games will do whatever needs to be done in order to win. Until that changes there will always be cheating.

  215. I don’t disagree with Charmain… cheating does not really get you anywhere. My dad for example owns a small business; and the day to day operations of managing, marketing, and dealing with all other aspects is like a game, and when the rules are bent, the day is not quite as successful as it could have been. Cheating is not always a life or death situation and yes occasionally one can get away with it, but if it is habitual, the amount of cheating can catch up with someone, and it is not good to be known as the business cheater. As I have worked with and watched many small businesses, i know that the rules being bent could make the day less successful and cost more time, instead of save it.

  216. Such an interesting read.
    I’m not sure if my reaction to the article is because I am a woman or not, but in the beginning with the fight against Charmaine, I agree with her.
    I understand that you were just trying to teach your son how to be a competitive athlete and asset to the team, and did not mean for this to parallel real life.
    However, in the game of basketball or any “play” sport, I believe that there are ways to win, without cheating.
    And I DO think that basketball/playing DOES parallel to real life.
    Allowing one to think that cheating in basketball is okay, is allowing one to compartmentalize ethics with exceptions and situations, which should not be the case.
    Ethics and your view on them, should be universal.

  217. Virtues are nothing more that Good habits people form over the course of their life, this is why parenting is so important. If a child is nurtured in a meaningful and virtuous way, they are able to learn virtue and are eventually self sufficient in terms of understanding what is right and what is wrong. A child who learns initially, generally through sports, that cheating is okay for the sake of winning, will have a blurred vision of virtue. They will not realize that what they are doing is wrong, and as they age and mature, they will have to deal with potential conflicts where they cheat or break a rule without knowing that it’s wrong. That first mistake will only escalate to a point where cheating becomes a habit for that person and when cheating is a habit, things like Enron and Worldcom occur.

  218. Very interesting article. People get very angry when the rules are bent, such as Donald Trump bending the rules with his tax returns. However, most people do the same thing as Donald Trump, but on a smaller scale. Whether it is rules in sports or rules in the business world, there are always exceptions where they can be stretched. I find it funny how people get upset about the rules being stretched when it is technically legal. If politicians, business men, and sports followers are upset with this, then they should change the rules so that they cannot be stretched without a penalty.

  219. Marisa Martinelli

    I believe that cheating in all aspects is considered a wrongdoing. No matter what the circumstance, it is important to be able to hold yourself and others to high standards of following rules and regulations when it comes to athletics and businesses. Although some people may believe they can get away with cheating at times, I think that it will always haunt us as a guilty conscience. As a collegiate athlete, I have seen the consequences that have come about due to cheating in sports competition and the negative impact it has on a team, athletic department, and even the University as a whole. It is important to always remember the consequences that can arise from cheating, both in sports and the business world, which can be a reminder to do the right thing.

  220. Christina Castaldo

    I really enjoyed this article because being an athlete my entire life, I was able to relate to the messages that were being portrayed. I truly value everything I have learned while playing basketball. I think the saying, “Winners never cheat, and cheaters never win” is important to remember not only in the sports world, but also in the business world. Winning is more than just winning a game or moving up in the business world. Winning is about what a person takes from an experience. It is disheartening to hear about how common it is for people to cheat in the sports world and the business world. A cheater may be able to find success at times, but in the long-run they will be the true losers not matter what the outcome. I have fortunately always been around role-models that take value in honesty and hard-work. I understand that win or lose, if you give something your all and can walk away saying you tired your best, then you can consider yourself a winner no matter what.

  221. I believe the focus of this article is not in the distinction between sports ethics and business ethics, but the general idea of an ethical person. If someone is apt to cheat, or does cheat in a sport, that same person is most likely to partake in scandalous business deals and other unethical life decisions. I also agree 100% with the quote, “Family business leaders’ ultimate goal is to keep the business going beyond the current generation. That’s why these businesses focus on growth and sustainability, not solely on short-term results.” –so called cheaters, those partaking in these unethical decisions, are solely concerned with the “there and now” and the short term growth and immediate response. Cheating your way through a business decision may help you quickly advance in a specific area, just as cheating on a singular play in a basketball game may actually lead that game to a victory; but, it is impossible for an athlete or a business owner to rely solely on these unethical practices. Because the long term consequences are always much greater than the immediate risk being taken. And if someone cares about their team (that could potentially get disqualified from a final tournament), or their business (that could potentially have a severe lawsuit filed against it), or more importantly their reputation…then they would simply avoid cheating and unethical behaviors in the first place.

  222. I thought Charmaine’s comment that “‘financial irregularity'” or other questionable business decisions begins with “harmless first steps” was very powerful. This is true of all unethical actions: a decision to tweak the numbers on an income tax form, touching an opponent’s shooting arm while the referee isn’t looking, telling a white lie to someone who trusts you, etc. In business, sports, and life, it is important to be ethical in the small things, because once you fail to do what is right when no one is looking or when no one will notice, it becomes easier and easier to be dishonest and unethical in bigger and bigger ways. It is extremely easy to convince ourselves that what we do is harmless even when we know its not if we start small.

  223. Having the extra edge even when it is cheating is key in the real world. Yes, sometime they are laws or rules that set boundaries to what you can do, but knowing your way around the system from a young age can lead to positive things in the future. Yes, Charmaine does give the perspective that cheating is not morally right in taking the easy way out in life, but I believe that people would be setting themselves back in life if they were not to take certain opportunities to edge out their competition. In all, knowing that cheating is inevitable I believe that it is something everyone will be exposed to sometime in their lives. Working your way around the system is not innate, but learned so it is best to start young.

  224. In the world of sports there are always allegations of cheating because in sports winning is everything. This is also the same in the world of business, people will always find ways to cheat if they think there is an advantage for themselves in the mix. As a young boy I found multiple scenarios where I was faced with the opportunity of cheating for a personal advantage. This article sums it up pretty well how “cheaters never win and winners never cheat.” It is important to be a man of good integrity and even better character to ensure that you never have to face a problem like this.

  225. Sometimes people spend more time figuring out how to cheat then figuring out how to play the game. The time spent on cheating could have been spent on improving your game or your business. Many think that cheating is the way to get ahead, when in reality it could be detrimental to you and your business. You take a risk when you cheat that could potentially be fatal to not only your business, but your employees and anyone involved in the business. Take the time that is needed to perfect your craft and there will be no need to cheat.

  226. It is crazy how apparent cheating has become in both business and in sports that most people, myself included, laugh at the fact that they are condoning the acts of cheating. Many people just shrug their shoulders and say “well that’s just part of the game.” However in both business and sports, practicing minor infractions can lead to committing major infractions that can jeopardize not only careers but businesses as a whole. This is one of the reasons that it is more important to practice good behavior as much as possible rather than just committing small infractions and hoping you don’t get caught. Eventually everyone gets caught and you are left picking up the pieces to your reputation and sometimes your career. Practicing good behavior and staying in the lines is much more beneficial in the long run.

  227. It is crazy how apparent cheating has become in both business and in sports that most people, myself included, laugh at the fact that they are condoning the acts of cheating. Many people just shrug their shoulders and say “well its part of the game.” However those small infractions will eventually pile up and if people don’t get caught they continue to think they can get away with cheating and their infractions become major. These infractions can ruin reputations, careers and even organizations. This is one of the reasons that it is more beneficial in the long run to always practice good behavior in the workplace. When “staying-in the lines” it allows people to be confident in their decisions and it allows the stress of making mistakes drift away because they know they are playing by the rules.

  228. I found this article very interesting. I’m not the greatest sports player, but I always enjoy the team aspect and the sportsmanship that goes along with it. Unfortunately, there always seems to be the players that just play to win and they do not care how they win whether they cheat or not. Instead of playing the sport for fun, learning how to work together, or discovering something new about yourself, the game becomes all about being the best and getting the most money. This is the same in the business world and basically any job you do, if you go through life throwing honestly out the window and trying to take the easy way out. It is easier the cheat your way to the top but your life will never become rewarding. You can get in trouble by cheating but you can never get in trouble by working hard and doing the right thing.

  229. The concept of honesty is taught to children once they can reason. Yes, it is hard to make clear to children that cheating is wrong since it is not only tempting, but can provide quicker rewards. Nevertheless, the important value of honesty is so that when we do earn successes, they are true.
    In athletics, cheating may only be penalized with a foul, red card, etc., but in business, cheating may result in a firing, bankruptcy, or even incarceration. A boss must determine the integrity of its company, and I will always be proud that my Dad’s company has always been honest and respectful towards all employees. This respect has proven reciprocated, in one instance an employee began to steal and when the co-workers realized, they approached and gave the employee an opportunity to return the items and stop. When she did not, they informed my Dad as his honesty earned their support and protection of the business.

  230. The subject of cheating with respect to business is something that’s very important to understand as Catholics. Unfortunately, most instances of cheating in the work place and when running a business are not black and white but rather many different shades of gray. Not all accounting tricks are on the scale of Enron and not all behaviors in the office place are as egregious as lying about a coworker to get a promotion. First off, it’s important to establish that just because a business practice is legal doesn’t make it ethical and just because a legal practice is unethical doesn’t make it any less necessary. For example, non-GAAP accounting is perfectly legal but nonetheless misleading because it inflates earnings. Another example would be donations to your local politician’s campaign in return for some form of preference or access. These practices are viewed by many as unethical but they are legal and unfortunately necessary for many businesses and large corporations to get ahead. This is more of what came to mind when speaking of cheating (cheating insofar as being a diversion from capitalism in a perfect world) in the business world and I find it difficult not conclude these are the rules and therefore, you must play by them. However, as Catholics and businessmen/businesswomen we must nonetheless strive to be a better example but must do so with acknowledging the deficiencies of human nature as well as an understanding that sometimes this is the game we have to play.

  231. Cheating is a tactic used by many… whether it is in small ways or larger the effect is often similar. It typically leads to messes or something worse, business failure. As my father is a small business owner and i have worked for him in many different positions, i know how the day-to-day operations work, and when they are done fairly and honestly, the day is much better than when the business manager/ owner cuts corners and tries to take the easy way out. Similar to a kids basket ball game… cheating can lead to a seat on the sidelines, in the penalty box.

  232. As someone who grew up playing sports, the concept of bending the rules when the official is not looking doesn’t seem that radical to me. I can remember the days where I would take advantage of these situations on the ice rink. However, when put into a larger perspective, it’s clear to me now that this behavior may only result in a minor penalty in a game, but in life there are no minor penalties. The consequences for devious actions are far worse than having to sit for 2 minutes. While I eventually stopped these actions, I can imagine that some people never move on from thinking it’s okay to bend the rules to succeed.

  233. Business owners have to deal with this topic all the time. There is always the temptation when marketing one’s product to stretch the truth and make it out to be better than it actually is. However, the point that successful businesses should have long-term focus is very helpful here. Having long term vision will lead to more ethical decision making. This is because ethical decision making establishes and preserves one’s good reputation and credibility which are qualities every business wants. Also, with long-term focus one will not be interested in the quick and easy short-term gain that comes from deception or ‘cheating’ tactics. In fact, the long-term thinker will not even value any such short-term gains so will be less inclined to use unethical techniques.

  234. I found this article very interesting. It is sad that some people think it is ethically right to cheat in athletic sports or in life in general. Sports games are supposed to be something that a team can do together and should be respected. It is not fair for people to cheat in sports games and cheating in that way is just gateway to cheating the way through your life. Cheating is ethically and morally wrong and should not be tolerated nor taught by coaches who are supposed to be leaders and role models for their team players. Being honest is a trait that is so important and cheating and honest go hand in hand, if you are cheating you are not being honest and your character is not positive.

  235. Elizabeth Gittings

    The saying “Cheaters never win. Winners never cheat.” is true to some extent. Clearly numerous people have gotten away with cheating whether on a sport level, college level or in the professional level. To me cheating on something is cheating oneself of the opportunity to expand his or her own knowledge. So even if not caught, the cheater goes away with less than the person who decided not to take the easy way out. I find it funny the reaction of the woman who asked the men what they learned through sport. Every athlete has “cheated” the system before. My personal favorite is my friend, if she was bleeding, would wipe her blood on the opposing team member and point it out to the referee so they had to exit the game. Despite this I still believe cheating is not okay and hurts the person who does the action in the long run.

  236. A coach is someone that kids and adults in the professional aspect of athletics look up to and respect and admire. If a coach is teaching his players how to cheat and get away with it he has no sense of any moral awareness or ethics. Cheating is such a dishonest and unfair problem in this world and after reading this article it is so much more apparent. A sports game is supposed to be a fair match between two teams and the players, if one is cheating they are being dishonest and show no respect for the game itself. Cheating in sports is just a gateway to possible cheating in your personal life or even your workplace.

  237. I think the central problem that the world faces is just how easy it is to cheat. It’s sure as heck not easy to recover from being found out as a cheater, but the way into cheating in the first place is just so available and then it’s a slippery slope that only leans down. We need to get to people, as CUA is trying to do with our business school, before they enter the world of business and advise them on how to be honest, but at the same time successful.

  238. I believe that the central problem that the world faces is just how easy it is to cheat. It’s sure as heck not easy to recover from being found out as a cheater, but the way into cheating in the first place is just so available and then it’s a slippery slope that only leans down. We need to get to people, as CUA is trying to do with our business school, before they enter the world of business and advise them on how to be honest, but at the same time successful.

  239. Bernardo Guillamon

    I think this article is very interesting because it outlines a very important problem in our society today. Many people cheat in sports and in business. I have played sports all my life and have been taught at a young age to play right- act on your values. Some people may be tempted to cheat, and in sports and life cheating may sometimes seem the quickest way to glory. However, as outlined in the article, the quote: “Cheaters never win. Winners never cheat” illustrates an important point. At the end of the day, you will get caught, some how or some way it will happen. Effective leadership and management includes a huge amount of trust, which if one cheats and gets caught destroys all the trust within that relationship, leading to negative results.

  240. I liked the line “Cheaters never win. Winners never cheat” within the article, because it is true. Cheating may seem tempting within business in order to get ahead, but in the end it only causes trouble. I am taking a class called “Ethics in Business” and I read case after case about employees who are lured into cheating and lying for a company, despite their guilty conscience, and end up facing the consequences (also known as prison). Everyone knows cheating is bad, yet why do people do it? Cheating may seem easy to get away with in the beginning (like when the referee has a turned back), but in the end it is not worth it. Cheating and lies add up in the end and not only destroys a large amount of hard work put into a business but also destroyed credibility and trust, two things that are hard to regain.

  241. I liked the line “Cheaters never win. Winners never cheat” within the article, because it is true. Cheating may seem tempting within business in order to get ahead, but in the end it only causes trouble. I am taking a class called “Ethics in Business” and I read case after case about employees who are lured into cheating and lying for a company, despite their guilty conscience, and end up facing the consequences (also known as prison). Everyone knows cheating is bad, yet why do people do it? Cheating may seem easy to get away with in the beginning (like when the referee has a turned back), but in the end it is not worth it. Cheating and lies add up in the end and not only destroys a large amount of hard work put into a business but also destroyed credibility and trust, two things that are hard to regain.

  242. Ethics is an extremely important part of business, and everyday life. A coach or manager teaching someone how to cheat is basically setting them up for failure because they are not only cheating the game, or the business, but they are also cheating them-self. Once you learn the “skill” of cheating it can lead to worse and worse situations. I especially liked what the article said about honesty beginning with accountability and respect for the game. More times than not you are part of a team and if you cheat you are also cheating your team members as well. “Cheaters never winner. Winners never cheat.”

  243. From playing sports throughout my entire life, I have learned cheating is simply a part of sports. However, the teams who consist of high integrity individuals tend to find success more often. Along with this, the success is often sweeter when attained in a clean way. The reason is because the coaches are more focused on the long term success of their program and players, rather than success attained by a short cut or cheating. This can be translated to business as well. The corporations who run their business in an ethical manner tend to have more long term success. In my opinion, it is the responsibility of the management and executive level employees to ensure that their ethics and strong moral beliefs are being carried out through the corporation.
    All in all, cutting corners and practicing unethical behaviors in business and in sports will not pay off in the long run. It is the one who plays by the book and displays morally correct behavior who will win out in the long run.

  244. Cheaters never prosper. This is a common saying and something that I have been told. Even if it starts with bending the rules and not being caught, soon it turns into breaking the rules and being caught. You might win the battle, but you are going to lose the war. Nesta Carter, a runner for Jamaica, got caught for doing drugs after winning the gold medal. He was stripped of his medal. He got caught even after the fact. Since it was a relay, his teammates got their medals taken away as well. This can be like a business. When one person breaks the rules, multiple people have to face the consequences.

  245. Cheaters never prosper. This is a common saying and something I have been told. Even if it starts with bending the rules, and not being caught, soon it turns to breaking the rules and being caught. You might win the battle, but you are going to lose the war. Nesta Carter, a runner from Jamaica, got caught for doing drugs after winning the gold medal. He was stripped of his medal. He got caught even after the fact. Since it was a relay, his teammates got their medals taken away as well. This can be like a business. When one person breaks the rules, multiple people have to face the consequences.

  246. Cheaters never prosper. This is a common saying and something I have been told. Even if it starts with bending the rules, and not being caught, soon it turns to breaking the rules and being caught. You might win the battle, but you are going to lose the war. Nesta Carter, a runner from Jamaica, got caught for doing drugs after winning the gold medal. He was stripped of his medal. He got caught even after the fact. Since it was a relay, his teammates got their medals taken away as well. This can be like a business. When one person breaks the rules, multiple people have to face the consequences.

  247. This article is spot on when it comes to the fact that just like in sports cheating in a business is so common. Now cheating in sports can be as little as taking a step over the line and saying you were in, or to the worst as shaving points in a big game! Just like in business there are small lies and big ones. Ones that start with your establish date and going all the way to working your books in favor of the company. Either way, a lie is a lie and in the business world, it will get you know where. Customers do not want to deal with a company that lies because when it comes to billing or getting the right materials for the job that lying company might overcharge or under supply the job. Leaving a sour taste in the customer’s mouth and never wanting to return, and worse, spreading bad publicity.

  248. The rules of business are easy, create a product, sell a product, advertise, and make a profit. No where in those steps does it say to cheat. However, in a business just like sports there are people who cheat. Yeah I certainly understand trying to get ahead in the market place, but to do so at the stake of your company does not seem worth it to me. The reputaion is the only thing a business truly has besides a product. However, some people are willing to gamble that all away just to get ahead when in the long run that little white lie or that massive “cooking the books” lie is going to destroy your company and cuase in some cases involve jail time!

  249. In some form or another, at some point in our lives we are faced with the opportunity to cheat or be honest. In some cases the cheating may be small and easy to get away with but leave us with that never ending guilt in our conscience. Some may cheat with a bigger goal in mind, in these types of situations, a good out come rarely occurs. Cheating in sports is something that we have seen done in various ways, whether it be a form of body enhancement or during the game itself. Sportsmanship represents honestly, respect, and teamwork, which would all be diminished by one act of cheating. It is important to remain honest in any type of situation because it will pay off in the end. We find ourselves wanting the best outcome, and maybe cheating would give the immediate gratification at the time but it will backfire in the end. As a Catholic, a part of our teaching and morals is to remain honest with ourselves, others, and God, keeping those values will lead to the fullest success.

  250. I believe cheating is common when it comes to sports games and businesses. In sports games, the most important objective is being the winner, and such a bad habit as cheating could happen, just to guarantee that you will win. It is similar in businesses. Some corporations would steal certain ideas from others in order to become more successful, which could lead to lawsuits and failure. Sports teams and businesses have to maintain an outstanding reputation so that people always respect and trust them. Also, steering clear of cheating in such matters would prevent sports teams and corporations from facing lawsuits and possible bankruptcy.

  251. While I agree that sometimes being sneaky, or cutting corners can achieve successful results, there is always the chance that those little deviances from rules/regulations can escalate into larger issues. Cheating has the ability to make one feel invincible in a sense; if you are not caught early on, you develop a false sense of confidence in your ability to get away with what is wrong and your initial hesitations do not have as strong of a presence as they first did at the first decision. When you do get caught “cheating” or “lying”, it going to be for something big- something you cannot recover from. True successes and winners do not deteriorate-they endure.

  252. I found this article very interesting because it points out that cheating has many consequences that are not often considered by the individual that is cheating. Small forms of cheating as the article points out can be a slippery slope to scandalous forms of cheating that lead to severe repercussions. One of the examples used was the Enron incident. I also found it interesting how the article discussed how males and females view cheating very differently. I did not know this was the case. Furthermore, it was interesting how the article talked about how small business’s should focus on long term success instead of short term success. At what point should small business’s focus on short term success due to their lack of resources? What should business owners do when their company starts to lose lots of market shares because their competitors bend the rules and they do not? Finally, I liked how the article also pointed out the ethical issues with cheating. I think if people have a strong passion for their job they should recognize how acting unethical taints the work that they are doing.

  253. While I agree that sometimes being sneaky, or cutting corners can achieve successful results, there is always the chance that those little deviances from rules/regulations can escalate into larger issues. Cheating has the ability to make one feel invincible in a sense; if you are not caught early on, you develop a false sense of confidence in your ability to get away with what is wrong and your initial hesitations do not have as strong of a presence as they first did at the first decision. When you do get caught “cheating” or lying, it will be for something big, something you cannot talk you way out of as you possibly did in earlier, smaller risk situations. True successes never deteriorate or are discredited- winning endures.

  254. “Cheaters never win” and “winners never cheat”. These quotes exist in every aspect of life whether we apply them to our relationships, taxes, sports, or businesses. It is truly a gift to be able to learn the art and theory of businesses through the Catholic lens, here at the Catholic University of America. We are lucky to be exposed to the world of business and contribute through ethical practices. Our hope, as students and future Catholic business leaders, is to revolutionize the way business is being done and to conduct ethical decisions, that way we don’t end up with another Enron situation. We learn that a simple ethical decision can impact the entire world and create a chain reaction, urging others, Catholics and non Catholics, to follow our paths.

  255. Its interesting to see what different genders define as cheating. As a kid I was taught to “cheat” while playing baseball. I played catcher and one of the tricks I was taught was to frame the ball, meaning make it look like a strike to the home plate umpire. Its almost impossible for the umpire to see every ball thrown so the have to go off the catchers mitt and framing the ball is a sure way to get a call in your favor. However, bending the rules does have a fine like, and can be considered cheating. Sports and business are very similar with he fact that the cheating rule applies to business as well. there is a limit to what an ethical business should do or could get away with, but the limit should be know and not everyone who is in a leadership position knows what that limit is.

  256. Gabriel Daviu Molinari

    In my opinion there really is not much of a debate. Cheating is 100% wrong. In high school, I played football as a defensive lineman. My usual opponent was the offensive lineman and one of the most important rules they have to follow is to not hold or grab the defensive players in any way. There was this one team that always found a way to hold on to me so I could not tackle the quarterback. Point is my friends from other schools also noticed this. We all had the same problem with the same team. Obviously as a sixteen-year-old I could not do anything, what I am trying to get at is that we all knew this team and we knew what to expect. In the business world the outcome would have been different. Do you think anyone would want to do any business that is known by everyone to cheat? Cheating goes against the Catholic Social Teaching and any honor that you withhold as a businessman. Last year I studied a concept called “the divided life”, which referred to those who did not follow the same values in their daily lives and their business lives. As a business man it is your duty to do business with moral values and respect to the other businesses.

  257. The analogy to sports is an interesting one to make when referring to business. There are a plethora of similarities between athletic competition and business competition. Both organizations and teams strive for one goal: to be better than their competitors. In order to be better than your sports competitor you must practice your role tirelessly and work cohesively with your team. The same goes for business organizations, so why would the notion of cheating differ? In both circumstances, cheating creates a morally wrong advantage and when caught can hurt an organization more than it can help them.

  258. In my opinion business and everything anyone does in life must be with honesty. I have learned that even the whitest lie could affect what you are doing. I completely agreed with the statement that is against even small lies. It is true that once you start to lie even with the things that seem most unnecessary, it will lead you to more lies. It also goes against the Catholic tradition to lie because lies can affect everyone. The video we watched in class was also very interesting. In this video the man distinguishes a business lie and personal lie. The reality is that a business lie is also a personal lie because he lied to give her daughter a fraudulent company. If they get caught even with the stupidest lie they can lose everything which will then affect your personal life. That is why we should all believe in the saying: “Honesty is the best policy”. An honest business will go a long way because it would be impossible for competitors to accuse you for dishonesty and there is no better feeling of being successful in an honest way.

  259. Cheating is a means for someone who cannot accomplish or create something by themselves. In the business world, if you cheat then that leads to many problems. That is the problem with cheating, it will follow you back everywhere you go. It will lead to a poor image and reputation because you will be tainted by said action. This is a reason why they teach you since you are just a kid why cheating is wrong and doing right and honest work is more honorable. Being original and creative is something companies and even people strive for, but one must be able to accept their qualities and ideas rather than just try to mimic from others. Last class, someone mentioned that lying is like the snowball effect, it will just keep getting bigger and bigger until it is too big and crashes into many things until it stops. People tend to look for easier and more accesible solutions, rather than putting in the work.

  260. I have participated in team sports from the moment I was able to run. The one thing about cheating that my experience has taught me is that if the referee doesn’t see then it’s not cheating. However, if you get caught, then you get penalized, which hurts not only yourself, but the rest of the team as well. It applies to business the same way. You can cheat to get an advantage, but the moment you are caught your personal actions can lead to the downfall of an entire organization. Places like Enron are prime examples of this.

  261. I find this conflict between cheating and doing the proper thing, whether in life or business or any other circumstance. The thought that you can cheat in business is a little scary, the fact that big companies, Google, Amazon, Facebook, might be lying about almost anything. These business lies are treacherous because what if the information gets leaked out that a company has lied, it could literally sink the company, almost like VW with their diesel emission scandal. Now as for lying in life it is still wrong but I agree that it is a strategy to get ahead, I mean no one knows so it won’t hurt them right?

  262. This article was extremely intriguing. Sports and business can have a lot in common. Both require a good leader, coachable and eager employees or players, and both work to establish a well-respected name or organization. A common misconception is that winning whether in business or in sports is a long term goal not a short term goal. Your win will not count for much if it is taken down for cheating or fraud. By looking ahead at the long term goal and following a code of ethics and morals. One will be able to establish a well-respected and hardworking organization.

  263. Throughout life one is faced with the decision between being honest and being dishonest countless times. In some cases the consequences of being dishonest are much more severe than other cases. Although sometimes dishonesty can give you an advantage or an added benefit it is morally correct to always do the right thing. In the business world honesty is a valuable quality in which all companies want in their workforce. Cheating and dishonesty can harm the views and legacy of a person in both the business and real world. When Jordan Belfort was arrested his legacy as one of the most successful investment bankers was stripped. As well as when Barry Bonds was caught using performance enhancing drugs his reputation as one of baseballs all time greatest hitters was questioned. Clearly, there is a large risk in cheating, however it can provide you with an advantage. But the morally correct thing to do is be honest and don’t cheat.

  264. Honesty is a quality that is developed through habit. To be an honest person, you must be honest in all of your actions, and over time telling the truth isn’t something you think about anymore – it is instinctual and becomes something you do without even thinking about it. The same is true for the opposite however. If you start telling lies and making poor choices, it becomes a habit to do so and before you know it, you’re not longer telling small “white lies” or cheating on insignificant things, but you become dishonest in every aspect of your life. This is why it is important for business leaders to remain honest in every aspect of their lives. A business leader cannot live a life of vice outside of his/her work environment and then attempt to be virtuous in their business practices.

  265. The article was very interesting because of the fact that I play sports. Specifically, I play football at Catholic University. In sports cheating happened on almost every play even if it is not caught. I played defensive end and even I would line up a little offside to get a jump on the ball. To be honest I can’t think of a way to justify my actions except that I wanted to win. In businesses if u cheat even a little you could lose your job or even worse end up in jail. As a child I was always taught not to cheat but for some reason it seems accepted in the sports world because everybody does it.

  266. I would like to agree with this article that, businesses should always focus on growth and sustainability. Growth and sustainability will facilitate organizations in meeting their long-term goals and objectives. The article is comparing basketball rules with business organization regulations and expectations. In this approach, transparency and trust will also facilitate firms in meeting their goals. Honesty begins with accountability as well as respect for the game. In this approach, employees and employers should be accountable for all activities in their organizations. In order to meet firm’s expectations, organizations should implement, written and unwritten codes of conduct for their workers.

  267. Abdulmajeed Anwar

    This article gives an insight on where and how business irregularities start: with just little harmless deeds that eventually grow into big problems. The small deeds which are normally ignored eventually grow into big deed and become a problem for the business. It is good to identify these small deeds as early as possible. It also explains how to avoid these irregularities: being accountable and having respect for business practices, authorities, team and even the written and the unwritten codes. It also encourages business people to focus on the growth and long term sustainability. It also enlightens on the dangers of not regarding the business codes of conduct.

  268. It is interesting to compare the difference of acceptance of cheating in sports and the business world. Even though both have wild spread cheating, in business, cheating is considered unethical. As a manager and leader. it is real important to maintain honesty and integrity in the business world. So many lives depend on the quick and honest decision that business owners and managers make on a daily basis. Falling into the trap of greed and power can create apart from mistrust, a collapse of the organizational framework. It is important to keep in mind that honesty is always the best policy.

  269. “Cheaters never win and winners never cheat.” Growing up playing sports I heard this saying numerous times from parents and coaches. I believe this statement reins true not only in sports, but also in life. Although sometimes it may seem that the cheaters are winning, at the end of the day they lost because they cheated themselves by compromising their integrity. Although it is easy to cheat and take the easy way out there is something so honorable about staying true to one’s convictions and integrity. As the article stated, honesty and accountability are two of the most important things in business that do not go unnoticed. We have to remember that there is always going to be someone we have to answer to whether it be in sports, in business, or in life.

  270. As i prepare to graduate and interview for Jobs i repeatedly hear the stereotypical “oh you play sports in college? Thats great, business is much like sports” As repetitive and cliche as it is, it is true. The competitiveness, the winning and the losing, the commitment. That being said one is a game and one is a business. When you bend the rules in sports you win a game, when you bend the rules in business people’s lively hood can be effected. It is my believe that bending the rules in sports is fun, and pushing the boundaries of the game is a necessity of the game but when it comes to business there is no other way than the straight and narrow.

  271. I really liked how this article highlighted the notion that cheating is a terrible thing. Being an athlete I can look at this from both perspectives: the business side and the athletic side. Both sides take honesty very seriously and cheating is very unacceptable. I believe as a leader or manager, you should hold yourself to higher standards in the work place. I believe managers should take cheating very seriously and should be aware if a subordinate cheats or is cheating. Cheating will not allow growth in the workplace as the article states. Everyone should hold themselves accountable in the workplace and it will make everything go much smoother.

  272. Here at the Catholic university of America, the principles of morality and honesty in business practices has been ingrained in us since the first course in the business school we have ever taken. The idea of cheating or bending the rules (even when not getting caught), goes completely opposite to the values we have been taught. Even with something as simple as “knicking the shooters elbow enough to mess up a shot without the ref noticing” may seem harmless on the surface. However, this is also a slippery slope that if taught those values of cutting corners and taking the short road to success will stick, just as bad habits stay with us in something like athletics because of muscle memory.

  273. I agree that once unethical irregularities arise in a business, it is easier for the irregularities to evolve into a massive white collar crime. The accountant for WorldCom was a classic example of someone who believed a few false accounting entries wouldn’t have consequences. Due to pressures from her superiors and her own financial pressures she created excuses for her unethical actions. Rationalization is very common to those who cheat, whether they are the masterminds or just the employees following orders. Choosing to not cheat, even when it may cost you your job or when you could have gotten away with cheating is what makes someone an ethical personal. The person who always choses the ethical path does it because she knows it is right by some higher power. Doing the right thing and not thinking about your own personal gains will always benefit you in the long-run. For this reason, businesses need to hire more ethical people who will be whistle-blowers rather than puppets, and leaders rather than cheaters. Comparing sports to the business world is a great comparison, and recognizing the main difference that the game ends while businesses go on is imperative to your analogy. Although one may get away with cheating in a basketball game, cheaters in the business world will inevitably be caught. The cheaters end up like Enron and WorldCom- with nothing.

  274. Elizabeth Gittings

    Cheating can take on many different definitions because each person as shown in this article holds different morals and opinions on the topic. I find the gender difference intriguing but to be somewhat true. In my personal experience I find males more likely to cheat than females, or it could possibly just be that they are more willing to admit to it. Both genders are definitely performing the act though, it is just to what extent. I think one reason that females have a more pristine image especially when it comes to cheating in the business world is because growing up they have an image set by the media of what to become and how to act. All girls are innocent, don’t start trouble, listen and are seen not heard. Males are depicted as rugged, trouble makers, dirt throwers and always being a problem. This media image creates our personal upbringing of those genders as close to the ideal as possible. There will always be an odd one out, but females are taught to be sensitive and I believe that cheating hits this nerve hard because it could “hurt” another person. Cheating has to negatively push itself onto another person and I think females are taught at a young age how to give a positive presentation towards others and not bring any distress to others.

  275. The main point that I got out of this article is that in order to run a successful small business, one must be honest from the beginning since the entrepreneur is thinking about the long run, rather than the short. In terms of relating opening a business to playing a sport, there are some aspects that are similar, such as strategizing (whether it be how to play defense, or where the location of the small business should be). In order to be a successful entrepreneur, the business owner needs to find a competitive advantage against his opponent rather than to cheat his way around. For example, in the game of basketball, one team can find their competitive advantage by simply being the taller team rather than cheating by pulling on jerseys. In terms of opening a business, a competitive advantage can be the prime location, rather than finding an illegal way to save money. The difference between a sports game and owning a business is that in the long run, the business owner is going to get caught since there is always going to be more than one person watching. In terms of a sports game, it is much easier to get away with cheating because it is a short-term process.

  276. It is telling how relevant and common place the act of cheating has become both in business and in sports. Most infractions that are committed, such as a subtle push off on a jump shot or couple dollars thrown into the pockets of executives, are not generally looked at as cheating, just bending the rules. And as long as you don’t get caught or you don’t bend the rules so much they break it is no big deal and no one is harmed. Obviously the world, and especially the business world, is not black and white. There is no direct right or wrong answer to every situation and question that arises. However, when it comes to cheating or even just bending the rules the best way to decide is to look at it from the opposite prospective. If you are the one losing money so the executive can make more how would you feel, or if you were investing in a fraudulent company and didn’t know how would you feel. someone is always harmed in someway, every action has a reaction. It is a stressful life to wake up everyday and worry if you will be caught for something that happened at work, the healthier life style is to embrace the rules and work within them to be successful.

  277. As a student in the Catholic University of America, I believe morality and ethical conduct have been instilled in us from the second we set foot on campus. Cheating in any shape, way, is completely wrong and only sets the stage for more wrong doings. It does not matter if you are caught in the act or not – but more so the idea that you did not accomplish anything “fair and square”. This article was very interesting considering I have played different sports a my life and can’t help but notice the small cheating acts that get noticed. Its almost as if cheating has become something incorporated into the sports world. This creates the negative foundation that it is indeed okay to cut corners and or hurt others to achieve or acquire something more easily.

  278. As someone who is involved in business and entrepreneurship, I am fully aware of the rule bending and breaking that occurs on a daily basis. I know of several business owners who are willing to do both in order to get an edge on their competition. Is it worth the risk? In my opinion, no because it always seems to catch up with them at some point. To be completely transparent, sometimes watching another competitors short term gains is enough to make me consider following in their footsteps and bending or breaking the rules. At the end of the day though, I always remember that nothing great happens overnight. The key to success is consistent, honest progress towards your goal.

    In regards to gender difference, I don’t believe that men are any more likely to cheat than women. As humans, we all have desires and when an opportunity to get what we want faster appears most of us will at least consider it. Men and women simply cheat for different reasons due to different needs and desires.

  279. Nicholas Johnson

    Business is a human enterprise. Properly speaking, neither animals nor plants create businesses. True, they may engage in complex social activity that centers around the distribution of finite resources, but they remain subhuman enterprises. On the other hand, humans are endowed with reason and free will, and all our activity is colored by this fact, either implicitly or explicitly.

    Of course, where reason and free will are present, so too are discussions of ethics and morality. These questions in turn are rooted in discussions of teleology; in other words, these issues remind us that business, nor any other human enterprise, do not occur in a vacuum. They are a part of bigger questions, which for Catholics, culminate in the responsibility to act rightly before both God and man. Of course, this ought not devolve into a saccharine understanding of love. Jesus’ and his Church is quite clear that love qua love makes rational demands of every human person that can often be quite difficult to realize. The task ought not be framed as simply getting along with everyone, but should be rather understand as a lifelong and communal effort to let Christ penetrate every aspect of one’s life.

    More than this, however, one does not need to be a Catholic to understand that business is not simply an area of moral anarchy. More often than not, doing the right thing is not only the morally upright but socially responsible. Humans by nature are social animals, and they do not respond well to behavior which attacks the social fabric. Indeed, wrong actions ultimately do the most harm to those who commit them. Ultimately, moral actions bring greater fruit than immoral ones, both now and in the future.

  280. Irina Baittiner

    It is always easier taking the easy way out to things in our lives, but doing things this way always bring consequences. If someone begins to cheat it will become normal and later a habit. We start getting used to making these “bad” decisions that we then become resistant to them. I believe that in order to be successful, it is important to act in a truthful way.

    My brother is very involved in sports therefore I have good knowledge on sports. I have seen coaches teach gamesmanship (the art of winning games by using various ploys and tactics to gain a psychological advantage). In this case, it is not directly cheating but rather playing with a foul in which the referee did not see, there not capitalizing those illegal skills. This is a minor act in sports, but when translated into the business world, we can turn out with major issues. Being from Venezuela , which is extremely corrupt and everyone is going the “easy” way in businesses, my family has taught me my entire life that being honest in business is the best way to go and the better the business will do.

  281. Interesting story, it was very relatable. Success is a road paved by truth. We must acknowledge the fact that we must be honest and honorable all the time. If we are honest and respectful in public but cheating and stealing when no one is looking, we will not be able to succeed in life.
    A professor in high school once told me, “The truth will out”. That is, no matter what lies you have told or how well you have hidden them, the truth will eventually come out. It always does. There are certain laws of nature that cannot be broken and I believe this is one of them. In a world created by goodness, evil cannot triumph.

  282. To understand the role ethics plays in sport and competition, it is important to make a distinction between gamesmanship and sportsmanship.

    Gamesmanship is built on the principle that winning is everything. Athletes and coaches are encouraged to bend the rules wherever possible in order to gain a competitive advantage over an opponent, and to pay less attention to the safety and welfare of the competition.

    A more ethical approach to athletics is sportsmanship. Under a sportsmanship model, healthy competition is seen as a means of cultivating personal honor, virtue, and character. It contributes to a community of respect and trust between competitors and in society. The goal in sportsmanship is not simply to win, but to pursue victory with honor by giving one’s best effort.

    Ethics in sportmanship requires four key virtues: fairness, integrity, responsibility and respect.

  283. I am in full agreement that learning to bend the rules in a business (typically to maximize short term gains) is a slippery slope, and one that ignores the common welfare. I can’t help but think of this article as it compares to a type of prisoner’s dilemma, where an individual’s dominant strategy (that is to say, what might be best for their personal gain) doesn’t align with the good of all those involved. Cheating, whether it is in a sport or business, is unlawful and cannot take place without being to the detriment of another organization, team, or ethical code. After all, most laws that are in place to govern business are designed to create a level playing field, and as such should be respected, or properly challenged in a legal manner (i.e. litigation). Serving a higher moral calling helps align the personal actions with the common good, which helps promote a more optimal equilibrium with less externalities that negatively impact other firms, the environment, the public, etc.
    So, while I agree that following the rules and cementing firm adherence to obeying the laws is important, I also can see how there is a difference between the arena of sports and business. While professional sports is basically a business (with legal recourse resulting from point shaving and the like), if we reduce the scale to a family picnic sack race, it is easier to recognize the borderline acceptance of attempting to get away with cheating. Sometimes that is part of the fun, especially since the outcome is entirely meaningless. The key is being able to draw a firm distinction between these different arenas, which is the larger issue at hand especially in a younger demographic.

  284. The belief that winning is everything is extremely prevalent in today’s society. We have been taught that a young age that winning is the most important thing because winners are richer and happier than losers. This has changed the way we play the game in most regards, including business. In sports there has always been a saying, “you ain’t cheating you ain’t trying.” This saying is now taking over the work place. It is becoming a belief that if you’re not cheating in someway, big or small, you aren’t too dedicated to the job and don’t want to move through the company or be successful. What we need to change as a society is our viewpoint on trying. Staying within the lines and being a hard worker can come hand in hand.We have to get away from the belief that bending the rules is okay as long as you don’t break them or get caught. This type of thought leads to situations like Enron or in the case of basketball, fouling out in the crucial moments of a playoff game. Sports and business are a lot alike, most of the time those who cheat eventually will be caught.

  285. In sports, like any other competition, there is an incentive to try and avoid, subvert, or break the rules. For the person who breaks the rules, at best it gives them a special advantage because if their opponent obeys the rules, then the cheater has an advantage. If the opponent cheats, then the two are on equal footing. The major problems with this are being caught, and by going down the ‘slippery slope’. Someone who is caught cheating immediately is branded with distrust and uncertainty, which creates problems not only for the cheater but the sport itself. Sports, like businesses, relies on a trust within the system that both will be held to the same standard and same rules. Athletes must trust that they are being held to the same standard so they can focus on the game, much like how businesses must trust that their competitors are being held to the same standards as they are. Trust is important for businesses since it is essential to the customer-seller relationship. If a customer cannot trust whether or not a business’ product will work, or whether or not that product or service is best for the customer. Ultimately, athletes, like businesses, will invariably push the boundaries of the rules, so they must be rigorously enforced.

  286. I am in full agreement that learning to bend the rules in a business (typically to maximize short term gains) is a slippery slope, and one that ignores the common welfare. I can’t help but think of this article as it compares to a type of prisoner’s dilemma, where an individual’s dominant strategy (that is to say, what might be best for their personal gain) doesn’t align with the good of all those involved. Cheating, whether it is in a sport or business, is unlawful and cannot take place without being to the detriment of another organization, team, or ethical code. After all, most laws that are in place to govern business are designed to create a level playing field, and as such should be respected, or properly challenged in a legal manner (i.e. litigation). Serving a higher moral calling helps align the personal actions with the common good, which helps promote a more optimal equilibrium with less externalities that negatively impact other firms, the environment, the public, etc. So, while I agree that following the rules and cementing firm adherence to obeying the laws is important, I also can see how there is a difference between the arena of sports and business. While professional sports is basically a business (with legal recourse resulting from point shaving and the like), if we reduce the scale to a family picnic sack race, it is easier to recognize the borderline acceptance of attempting to get away with cheating. Sometimes that is part of the fun, especially since the outcome is entirely meaningless. The key is being able to draw a firm distinction between these different arenas, which is the larger issue at hand especially in a younger demographic.

  287. Winning IS everything is truly relatable to most aspects of work and life to most people. People in all fields of work are trying to either make more money or do a better job than there co workers and competitors. Maybe it is getting to work early or beating your boss in to show up your co workers. Anything people do to get an advantage, either legal or illegal shows signs of a good worker in my opinion. Sayings like “your not trying if your not cheating.” or “It’s only illegal if you get caught.” make doing the wrong thing seem like its really not that bad as long as you are consistent or doing a good job. People everywhere are always trying to cheat to be better so when it comes to sports and work two things that are based on competition winning is everything. Getting caught is justice but if everyone is cheating then there needs to be a reevaluation of what is done to succeed.

  288. Being a manger for my high school’s basketball team allowed me to view the entire games differently from the players and the refs. I was able to see the entire court and to pay attention to everything that was happening while the game went on. Having played basketball I also knew of the different types of cheating and rule-bending that can go on. When I would see the other team’s player start to bend the rules, the rest of the coaches and I would try and get the ref’s attention to what the player was doing. Though nothing would ever happen, after a while I realized that even if he did cheat, if the ref did not see exactly what I saw he could not do anything about it and the player was able to get away scot free. The same goes for the world of business, sure many companies are caught cheating and are brought to justice, but how many others are able to get away because the refs have not seen them in the act yet. For the third party watchers that bear witness to this, sometimes there is nothing we can do without proper evidence to show. I believe that cheating will always be in both the world of sports and business for there will always be someone who wants an edge over their competitors and that can never change. Though it would be a good idea to start and teach the next generation about how cheating can affect them in their future both in sports and in business.

  289. Katarina Percopo

    In today’s world cheating has become so prevalent and so easy to do its almost expected. Cheating is a morally and ethically wrong choice to make and it effects more than just yourself. Cheating in a sports game effects your entire time and the team you may be playing against. Cheating is giving you an unfair advantage and the game should be played even and fair between both teams. Cheating in school also is unfair to the other classmates who take their time to study and focus on school. Cheating is taking the easy way out and in the end it only hurts oneself, you wont grow stronger or better as an athlete and you wont prosper in the academic world either. If one really wants to succeed in life and live through good moral and ethical choices than one should definitely not engage in cheating

  290. Whether it’s the business world, athletic world, or any other part of our society, cheating is not only common but at times expected. The saying “if you’re not cheating, you’re not trying” is too often used within the sports world and can be applied to any aspect within the business sector. In today’s world, people want to get rich quick, win immediately, and ultimately, gain success in the fastest way possible. Due to this mentality, cheating has become a normalcy that has negatively effected our society and will continue until a morality/culture shift takes place, which is beyond easier said than done. While reading this article, I agreed to both the man and woman’s side of things, but then I thought, “what if society continues to normalize cheating in order to win at all costs?” If this is the case, I would be almost forced to teach my son or children ways to maneuver around the rules in order to gain success. Certainly, I hope this is not the case, but as society changes we as people have to change or at times we may find ourselves swallowed up with no where to turn. Fairness and proper methods of success should always be taught and the norm, until society as a whole grasps onto a concept that forces those to either catch on or fall.

    • JoHanna Metzger

      Connor, I could not agree with you more. Cheating has become such a normalcy and that is one of the many reasons our society is the way that it is today. Just like you stated, people want to be rich quick and win immediately. No one wants to work for their goals anymore. They want to find the shortcut and easiest way possible to get something done. I think this has a lot to do with why our society today has become so lazy. I know you worked to be a great soccer player; putting in the extra hours of shots on goal before and after practice. I know this because I did the same, taking over 100 shots before and after practice. If we teach our kids to cheat, they will never understand grit and perseverance.

  291. Cheating today has become one of the most used tactics in business and sports. The reason why this is true is because a lot of people don’t see it as cheating. Instead of looking at as breaking the rules they see it as just bending them. I myself have had an experience regarding this topic. With me being short in height I constantly try to find a way to make playing sports easier for myself. Ever since I was playing youth basketball I always tried to find a way to out play my opponent, even if it meant that I have to cheat a little bit. I did this because I was very focused on my goal, winning. Winning or success is the reason why most athletes or businessmen bend the rules and are willing to risk what may come if caught. Risk taking is a very big part in sports and in business so bending the rules can eventually have an impact being good or bad for the athlete or businessman. Sadly we don’t live in a perfect world so those who cheat may never caught, but those people would never know how it really feels to succeed without cheating.

  292. There are many takeaways and “ah ha” moments in this script. I have been a head men’s basketball coach for semi-pro and recreation teams for over twenty-three years, having coached many overseas players as well. The message I get from the article is to teach the youth (or young executive) the rules of the game, how to legitimately play the game, and how not to cheat. If the proper foundation is set, then that person may not steer off that path later in adult life. Ethical training, knowing the law and those consequences, and operating with optimum integrity will go a long way in becoming and remaining successful. A financial crisis may arise during any business entity, and cheating to gain an advantage is wrong. In regard to the differences of gender in business, men may have a different view of a particular situation than women and vice versa. Ultimately, how the individual responds are what matters the most. No gender is exempt from making mistakes or taking an unhealthy risk. It is a matter of the heart in which the decision is made to either do the next best right thing or risk the uncertainty of the grave consequences.

  293. I think this relates to our everyday lives in multiple ways. I was taught and raised that in order to be a succesfull person, I must be both honest and moral in my every actions. In fact, I was also told that “lies and manipulations have short threads”. The truth will always be found somehow; now or later it doesnt matter. Even in sports, people train their whole lives to better themselves and be able to win. Somebody who lies and cheats may be able to cut corner and if everybody did so, nobody would advance forward. Mankind would remain stuck. I also believe that those who do cheat are never going to be able to face real issues or know how to react in certain situations.

  294. I agree with this article because, businesses should be focusing on development and expansion. both of them will encourage organizations in meeting their long-term targets and objectives. This article is contrasting basketball rules with business organization regulations and expectations. In this case, vision and trust will also motivate firms in meeting their goals. first to start with accountability as well as respect for the game. In this approach, employees and employers should be accountable for all activities in their organizations. In order to meet firm’s expectations, organizations should implement, written and unwritten codes of conduct for their workers.

  295. I found this paper very fascinating because it is something we experience on a daily basis. Someone is always trying to find ways to get one step ahead whether it been sneaking into line to not wait the whole thing or weaving in and out of cars because you don’t want to wait. It is in our nature as humans to take that jab at the players arm when the ref isn’t looking because we know it will give us better control over the situation. While I do not think that little cheats like this are by any means horrible, I just think that humans naturally have that instinct engrained in them that we must be on top. It’s just like king of the hill, we are constantly fighting with others to get to the top and sometimes the road to glory isn’t pretty. While we should respect others rights we as rational beings understand that sometimes we must go against our integrity for our own good.

  296. Unfortunately, I am fully aware of the rule bending and breaking that occurs in businesses of all sizes. Several members of my family are small business owners and so I am privileged to firsthand accounts of what goes on behind the scenes. Typically, from what I’ve gathered, the rule breaking originates from a desire to get ahead in one way or another. Is it worth the risk? In my opinion, no, because in each of the stories I’ve been told the short terms gains from cheating are followed by misfortune shortly after. My main takeaway from these stories is simply that nothing great happens overnight. The key to success is consistent, honest progress towards your goal.

    In regards to gender, I don’t believe that men are any more likely to cheat than women. As humans, we all have desires. When an opportunity to get what we want faster appears, most of us will at least consider it. Men and women simply cheat for different reasons due to varying needs and desires.

  297. Regina Randolph

    Dr. Robert Goldman, an expert in health sciences, asked elite athletes if they would take a drug that guaranteed success in sports if it meant a death sentence in five years. The answers he received showed the power of the urge to win. The majority of elite athletes responded that they would take a performance-guaranteeing pill at the cost of an early death.

    The same is likely true for business leaders. Somehow, standing on the podium, or appearing on the cover of Fortune magazine, even as the result of a lie, remains compelling.

    The business analogue to doping often involves half-truths, insider information or concealment. The motives for business leaders are the same as those for elite athletes – fame, money, credit, admiration. In sport, in business, or in life, finding oneself admired or envied for a lie is a uniquely unstable victory.

    This can be very confusing for young people who are solidifying their sense of right and wrong. In sports, many coaches teach that when cheating doesn’t fall under the category of building a phony legacy (as in the Lance Armstrong case), it can be understandable, forgivable and even a healthy part of short-run competitive instincts.

    Sorry, I’m not buying that.

  298. I think there is a huge difference between bending the rules and cheating. I do not believe bending the rules in sports or basically anything is cheating. When one bends the rules, they are trying to get any type of advantage as possible in order to win the game or whatever they’re doing. If there is no rule disallowing what you are doing then it is just simply not cheating in my opinion. However, If it becomes too much of a problem then simply make it a rule to allow it it to happen. I have on many occasions bent the rules in order to try and help my team win that is just my nature. Just because I bend the rules does not mean I cheat as I think that it is wrong and leads to cheating in life further down the road. However, bending the rules to try and gain an advantage is just simply harmless to me and always will be.

  299. Though the cheating in sports analogy is difficult for me to relate to, I am drawn to the major differences alluded to regarding men and women in business. As more and more women pursue business degrees and make advancements in the workplace I think it is increasingly important to study the different leadership styles. When we refer to ethics in business and the trainings required here, it needs to be stressed, as it is in this article, that what is challenging for men may not be for women and vice versa. I would be curious to hear more about the women who were shocked to hear the number of men who cheat in athletics and see no issue with it. Were they able to articulate their concern well enough to change their way of thought? Or did the men continue to see no issue? I also think this is an area of personal reflection for me as a woman, what may be a challenge for me that does not affect my male colleagues?

  300. It is a sad thought that lying and cheating has become a norm in society and in small businesses. It is almost like you are at a disadvantage now because everyone is bending the rules and being rewarded for it. I do think this makes cheating more enticing. I do admire how badly people want success, but the price they are willing to pay to reach their level of success is frightening. Wanting to get somewhere and doing it the right way is hard to find these days. It is amazing how people are willing to compromise their reputation and morals for success.

  301. It is always easier taking the easy way out to things in our lives, but doing things this way always bring consequences. If someone begins to cheat it will become normal and later a habit. We start getting used to making these “bad” decisions that we then become resistant to them. I believe that in order to be successful, it is important to act in a truthful way.

    My sister is very involved in sports therefore I have good knowledge on sports. I have seen coaches teach gamesmanship (the art of winning games by using various ploys and tactics to gain a psychological advantage). In this case, it is not directly cheating but rather playing with a foul in which the referee did not see, there not capitalizing those illegal skills. This is a minor act in sports, but when translated into the business world, we can turn out with major issues. Being from Venezuela , which is extremely corrupt and everyone is going the “easy” way in businesses, my family has taught me my entire life that being honest in business is the best way to go and the better the business will do.

  302. Stephen Terenzio

    As someone who grew up playing sports, the concept of bending the rules when the official is not looking doesn’t seem that radical to me. I can remember the days where I would take advantage of these situations on the ice rink. However, when put into a larger perspective, it’s clear to me now that this behavior may only result in a minor penalty in a game, but in life there are no minor penalties. The consequences for devious actions are far worse than having to sit for 2 minutes. While I eventually stopped these actions, I can imagine that some people never move on from thinking it’s okay to bend the rules to succeed.

    Additionally as someone who recently became an official, it’s hard to admit that not everything on a playing can be seen. What you hope as an official is that everyone is on the field to play for the enjoyment of the game. However, this is not always the case, and sometimes you do have to step in an enforce punishment when the “players” attempt to bend the rules to gain an advantage.

  303. Raymond A. Watson

    In life, there are many ways to get by. One of these ways is shortcuts. The Professor’s scenario gives us an understanding of why he would teach his son a way to have an advantage over an opponent. Why wouldn’t anyone try to do the same in real life? However, these shortcuts can have major consequences sometimes. People who cheat or constantly look for ways to succeed without really trying simply do not care for the repercussions that may occur. If you cheat in the business world, then it can obviously lead to many problems. One of the worst things that can happen to a businessman or any other person is to be reminded of their mistake. It will always follow you and it will lead to a bad reputation since you will be tainted by it. One must always try to face a situation head on, no matter how difficult it may be. Many people try to look for the easy and uncreative way to their solutions rather than fixing and handling the situation themselves. By being able to focus on the game, you won’t be sidetracked by trying to look for a shortcut to success. No one said it was going to be easy, but it’s all part of the game. How someone deals with the struggle, the endurance, and the perseverance are the things that make a player (or businessman) stand out from the rest.

  304. Interesting debate! In my opinion, the example of the similarities of sports and business is good but we cannot take it too literally. I believe it is good to take risks but always within the guidelines of the game and that is how it should be with business. The example of fouling someone while the ref is not looking is not a good example because technically you are cheating and if you get caught they will call a foul on you and the difference between basketball and business is that in basketball you have 5 fouls and in business you only have one and the penalty is prison. Taking risks within the boundaries or rules of the business is better because even though you are risking money and not your freedom. Risks are necessary in business and in sports but cheating should never be accepted. Risks within the rules have a bigger reward than a loss. Leaders should always know the difference between taking smart risks and risking your life and the business you are working in. Leaders need to be able to motivate their workers to take risks and while making those risks to give the best and maximum effort. When a business is caught with stealing or bending the rules it usually affects a lot of the people that work in the company even thou8gh they were not involved so, it is always good to be considerate with other people and yourself.

  305. I grew up playing many different sports, most of which were girls’ teams, but I had the privilege of being the only girl on my baseball team one year. On the girl teams, we respected our opponents who were gifted because they came by their skill honestly. If they cheated, they were devaluing the hard work of everyone else around them. The female teams all seemed to have a longer focus, one that pointed out that you might be on another team in the future, so we needed to get along with our competitors because we needed to be “nice.” The boys’ baseball team I was on focused significantly more on getting the most points. It was ok, if not encouraged, in this league to skirt danger and make some questionable plays so long as the umpire did not see in order to win a game.

    I was also privileged enough to study aikido for several years. It taught me that we learn our habits and skills in the little things. We learned each exercise by practicing the micro movements necessary in slow motion, eventually speeding them up; they became precise and intentional. In the same way, we learn our moral lessons in how we handle the small things (how we play a sport or how we interact with our childhood friends.) As we get older, the morality we learn begins to play out into larger decisions and situations. If you learned and practiced a worldview that promotes justice, as we enter the business world, we can recognize and make just decisions, but otherwise our decisions can be sloppy and malformed. How we play a game as simple as basketball can have important consequences for how we live in other areas of our lives.

  306. While the disagreement between the Professor and Charmaine addresses important views concerning women in the workplace, I believe it begs a bigger question. Can women afford to cheat in business? For many years women have been thriving in business, but in terms of game play they are only a few minutes into the second half. Is the risk of cheating right now worth possibly losing the game? Cost Benefit Analysis is one of the most basic tools in finance in which the costs, both direct and indirect, of a possible venture are subtracted from the total benefits. The direct cost for cheating in business is incarceration. This looming consequence often deters employees from taking illegal shortcuts to success, despite the potential payout. However, for women in the workplace there is a heavy indirect cost. There aren’t more females incarcerated for white collar crimes, because, in a sense, business-women are playing for a larger team: their entire gender. The ramifications for cunning behavior or shady deals could greatly hinder the future for females in the industry.
    Nevertheless, this may all just be because women are far better at manipulation and have found the secret to evading the law; I cannot say. In my opinion, the loss of integrity and tarnished character of any man or woman is enough of an indirect cost to discourage him/her from such deception.

  307. Stephanie Cardonne

    While analogies are useful to understand certain things, I do not think that sports and business can equate too literally. Sports are just a game, especially at the young age talked about in this article. There is usually nothing more than pride or a trophy at stake. Well and of course your soul. But it does not affect others the way business does. If you cheat in business by cooking the books, or skimming some profit for yourself you are jeopardizing every single employee, investor, their families, and the community. It puts the company’s future at risk, could lead to loss of jobs, and tarnish the reputations of so many, even if they were ignorant to the cheating. To this day someone with Enron on their resume is seen with a twinge of suspicion as to their integrity.

    With that said there are similarities between playing sports and doing business. In sports, at least the way I learned them, you always want to maximize opportunities to score as you do in business. That means you have to take risks, but calculated risks. For example, if I have never made a 3 in my life, just because I have a wide open shot doesn’t mean I’m going to take it, but that also doesn’t mean I am going to break the rules and charge the defender in the pain in the hopes the ref doesn’t catch it and I score.

    In sports, business, and life it is important to seize opportunities and take risks, but never to compromise your integrity for money or glory.

  308. Jimmy Golaszewski

    As a basketball player, I have been taught almost every trick in the book that I can use to pick up a foul call or disrupt the opponent without getting called for a foul. I have been told that this is all part of the game and that I need to gain whatever advantage I can. I have always overlooked the fact that what I am doing is in fact cheating and not just gaining a competitive advantage until my internship this summer. In basketball, if I were to hand check away from the ball to disrupt the offense, I would hope the ref would not see the foul but if he did, the only penalty is a foul call and that is not very serious. In business, if I was to not properly document the payments made, or ignored part of the process needed to complete business, the repercussions are much more serious.
    I think it is important to understand both the punishment that will come as a result of cheating but it is unethical and you should understand the moral consequences. Winning is always fun but to win the right way is more satisfying and the same should apply to making a profit in business. Making a positive impact on people and earning what you deserve is more satisfying that cheating your way to success.

  309. Victoria Butterfield

    Growing up playing sports, I have seen a lot of individuals attempt to try and bend the rules and cheat their way through challenges. Competitive swimming taught me that cheating really hurts you more than suffering through a hard practice. Many people would cut corners during practice to show our coach that they were improving but, when the time actually mattered at meets they would do significantly worse. Or they would skip our morning runs, and weight training and see no improvements in their times. Cheating makes you worse off because if you do not put the time and effort into practice, you will not see good results.

    Unlike sports, you cannot cheat your way through life or work. You have to make the ethical decisions and make sure everything you do is thought out so you are not hurting others along the way.

  310. As a person who grew up playing the sport ( Basketball and Rugby ) when someone cheats it usually affects the whole team because you have to work together in order to achieve a positive result. Cheating is bad because there are some people in the team work hard every day but end up being affected by the action of their teammate. In some cases, the person who cheats might get a technical foul and still affect the team as well because the coach might have drawn a game plan based on the skill of each player.

    In the business, cheating is really bad because the mistake of one employee can reflect badly on the entire company. There are cases of people who lose their assets on the trading market just because one person cheated. Companies work hard to achieve certain goals and accumulate a certain number of assets. It is really hard for them to get penalized for something they did not plan. The person who cheats too want to get ahead faster but he had to consider the right way which is hard work, dedication, and the most important ethics because when a person cheats sooner or later he or she ends up getting caught.

  311. This was an interesting article. When I read the title, I did not expect it to turn into a gender difference article. Professor Yoest, and many other men, might have learned a thing or two from this read. His wife, Charmaine, pointed out a good point about how women create things while respecting boundaries. Most women find it shocking that three men simultaneously stated that they learned how to cheat while playing on sports team. Is this how men work? They cheat their way to the top? No, boys cheat when the referee or umpire isn’t looking, but men have long-term goals to continue an honest and sustainable business. Therefore, they can’t cheat if they have long-term goals. Somehow they will always get caught. The best way to succeed is to answer to high authority and your team. Just like Charmaine stated, “Cheaters never win. Winners never cheat.”

  312. This article was an interesting read, and it reminded me a lot of my brothers and Dad. They are extremely competitive when it comes to sports, and growing up they as well would joke about cheating in a game in order to win. My Dad coached numerous teams of mine and though he would laugh about grabbing someones jersey in a basketball game or nudging them while the ref was looking the other way, he never carried that mindset throughout his own career. Now that they are older and wiser, my brothers also live honestly and have succeeded in their jobs doing so. My Mom, like Charmaine, was a huge influence on this positive change for the boys of the family. Though cheating can seem like an entertaining solution when it comes to sports, board games, etc., one who is honest and loyal in the real world and with business relationships will gain a much more rewarding outcome.

  313. Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    This peaked my interest. Coming from a background of sports, and being an offensive lineman, cheating is what we do. Every play is against the rules, because of the holding inside, but if the ref does not see then it can not hurt you. This is a dangerous mind set because it is knowing how far you can actually go to the point where you are actually wrong and can get yourself and your team in trouble. Know if I hold inside the chest and get a good block am I really doing anything truly wrong. No its apart of the game, but if I rip the guy down from his side are back then I am going to far. I think this teaches the proper form of moderation. if you know the proper way of truly right, okay and wrong then there’s nothing wrong with bending the rules as the article said. It is watching for those guys that take it to far that will get you in trouble. You need to know how to play the game the right way in order to win.

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