Code of the West

In these challenging times, perhaps it may be helpful to turn back to what some might call a simpler time – the time of the Old West. James P. Owen, Wall Street veteran and author, laid out the “Code of the West,” which offers some interesting ideas that we can apply to our business and our careers.

Live each day with courage.

It takes courage to keep heading out into the unknown after rejections and failures. It’s risky, but you need to get up in the morning and keep getting back in the saddle.

Take pride in your work.

Don’t get sloppy. Put out the best service you can, provide the best product you can, and back it up.

Always finish what you start.

A job half done is a job undone.

Do what has to be done.

Sometimes what has to be done is difficult or uncomfortable for us. But if it has to be done to accomplish the goal, just do it.

Be tough, but fair.

Sometimes it’s difficult to come down hard on someone, or to not back down when faced with unreasonable expectations, or to put up with unethical competitors. Always take the high road and stick with sound principals.

When you make a promise, keep it.

There’s no better way to build and maintain credibility than by keeping promises. Trust adds value to what you are selling.

Ride for the brand.

Sit tall in the saddle when you are representing the company. Others will be more interested in what you’re selling if they sense your devotion to it.

Talk less and say more.

If you hear what they are saying you will be able to respond to their needs – for information, service, products.

Remember that some things aren’t for sale.

Don’t sacrifice integrity and honor for short-term gain.

Know where to draw the line.