Honesty is Always the Best Policy

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During a recent business trip out of our Chicago offices, I was in my Los Angeles-area hotel room, watching the local news. They were featuring one of those “exposés” that local consumers “don’t want to miss.”

 

The reporters went undercover and brought in a properly working computer—but with a purposely loosened major cable connected to the motherboard—to several computer repair centers. Some of the repair centers were inside nationally well-known chain stores, while others were independently owned storefronts. The undercover reporters were basically testing the shops to see if they could properly diagnose the problem, and if they would charge them fairly for any repairs.

 

When all was said and done, there were one or two repair shops that insisted that the hard drive was fried and needed to be replaced for several hundred dollars—and then denied they said it until confronted with a hidden videotape of the statement. But there were more places that correctly pinpointed the problem—and some who even refused to charge for the labor time since it was such a simple repair.

 

You know the old adage: One rotten apple can spoil the whole bunch. Don’t be that apple. I don’t have to tell you (or, I shouldn’t have to) that running an ethical business is the right thing to do. But you do have to understand the power you have over the non-techie. Know that you can provide a valuable service and that you can help those who are without the IT education and certifications, and depend on your fair services when they see a blue screen of death. Don’t take advantage of them: You may just end up on the local news’ latest sensational report.

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