Yesterday as I waited for my ride, I watched two men do everything they could to jump the queue for an auto. They jumped over q-manager as soon as one of the autos lining up to pick up fares agreed to take them where they wanted to go. Their joy at beating the system was loudly vocal but short-lived. Mall security made them get off and return to the queue.
They walked back angry and insulted, yelling about unfairness and printed rules and transparent systems, so customers (the two of them) weren’t adversely affected.
And so it is in business as it is in life. When we break the rules of fair play, we congratulate ourselves for being more imaginative. If we consciously make unrealistic promises, we can always apologise later. If we don’t get caught, it’s because of our superior smarts, not because we unfairly gamed the system. We don’t stop to think of how our actions impact the rest of the world.
And if we do get caught, it’s because the rules were unfair.