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Responsibility Creates Good Business

Jerry Bernhart’s article, “Use Your Gut to Hire Database Marketers” in the Oct. 18 issue of DM News contains some very good advice and ideas. However, one of his suggestions really rubs me the wrong way. It is No. 4, “What type of causes or community service are you involved in?”

My initial reaction when seeing this suggestion was positive: a ray of corporate citizenship! Great! I was very dismayed by his use of that question – to disqualify the candidate from a job. Personally, I believe that is an excellent qualification, because it shows a person who is able to go beyond just work and demonstrates responsibility and respect toward the community. It certainly would require some effort to handle both a job and a community service responsibility, but that is an effort that, as an employer, I would gladly support. I find that people who give of their time are often more responsible and more understanding of customer needs because they have turned their focus outward, instead of inward as seems to be the trend in today’s world.

The driving motivator for people today – and for companies – seems to be “What’s in it for me?” rather than “How will this benefit us and our community?” We have become so selfish with our time and with ourselves that finding people who are willing to extend themselves beyond the workplace is refreshing.

Mr. Bernhart might want to read Rhonda Abrams wonderful book, “Wear Clean Underwear: Business Wisdom from Mom.” It provides a refreshing look at what business today should be like.

Robert F. Galivan is President, OptiCom Inc., Miami

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