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Spirit Lake Consulting, Inc.

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Dr. DeMars' Blog

Click on any link below to read that day's blog. You may learn something useful, but I wouldn't count on it.



Shocked face Where is the rest of the blog?
This page was getting really long and taking a long time to load with all of the images. So, I moved over the older entries into an archive section.

You can click here to just go to the whole page and peruse.

Or, if you want to be more selective, here are a couple of random entries I recommend for no logical reason, followed by the next most recent blog entry.

07/26/07 What's it like on the reservation? Is my personal answer to a question I get asked a lot.
06/25/07 You don't know what you got until it's gone - in sickness, in health and parking tickets
06/07/2007 I am insane. - Semi-profound thoughts on starting and running your own business.

08/24/07 Behind the scenes
We have been doing a lot of work here at SLC but very little of it is visible from the outside. Two new workshops are coming out next month, Tribal Leaders with Character is about one-third done now.

I think this workshop will become one of the most useful and in demand products we deliver. The results of our ethics survey showed so many ethical issues, misuse of travel expenses, ignoring personnel policies to hire relatives, verbal and even physical abuse at work. Some people have asked Dr. Longie why he would 'air our dirty laundry' in public. His answer is that hiding problems has never been a step in finding solutions.

This is really going to be a unique course. It includes numerous examples of ethical values from Native American history, from famous leaders such as Sitting Bull to less well-known figures like Big Soldier. We also include modern thought on what is ethics and research on moral meltdowns in modern corporations such as Adelphia and Enron. There is a section on "fear, silence and not-so-innocent bystanders". As one author points out, you can't steal a billion dollars all by yourself with no one knowing about it.

Most of the ethical violations that are reported in the media are not the type of "Gee what is the right thing to do?" case study that you see in other courses. Character education classes often have case studies about, for example, whether it is acceptable to steal money to buy medicine to save a baby's life. That is not most ethical violations, either in companies or tribal programs.

From Enron to tribal councils, we see ethical violations that are blatant. People use the tribe's money to pay off their pick-up truck. Company presidents file false tax documents and then shred the true documents. How difficult are these ethical questions,

"Should you lie about company profits, overstating these by millions of dollars, so you get a bonus?"

"Should you pay your mistress $40,000 a year as a grantwriter for the tribe even though she has only a tenth-grade education, has never successfully written a grant in her life and only comes into work two days a week?"

These are not hard questions. If the answers are so obvious, why do we have so many ethical violations occurring on reservations and what can we do to change the situation. Take the course and find out. For more information, contact Dr. Erich Longie.