Honesty and gratitude are twin brothers!

I’ve grown up believing all my life that "honesty is the best policy!"

I’ve not come across a truer statement than that. If you’re honest in your private life, it will also spill over into your professional life. And if you are a small business owner or entrepreneur, should strive at all cost to be honest in everything you do, and by extension all you do with everyone that patronizes your business.

A case in point:

Earlier today, someone mistakenly sent $100 (Jamaican dollars) credit to my mobile phone. The number from which it came wasn't familiar, however, I immediately replied to say "thank you" to this very kind person. Surprisingly, the return response was, this time by voice from a female caller to say that the $100 credit wasn't for me, but for her son, whom she said was in school and had earlier called requesting the credit. The woman graciously apologized for the inconvenience, but requested that I return the credit. I’d no idea how to return it and told her so, and she related the instructions. I promised that I'd return it immediately.

... every time!

So, I followed the woman’s instructions and returned the credit (minus $2 … it would have cost me that much to return the credit... and because it was not fault of mine, she didn't want to deprive me of $2, so she was willing to lose that much to regain $98). Several minutes later, the woman called again thanking me for being so kind, and adding that "most people would not have returned the credit. Thank you so much, Sir!"

Now, let me ask you: “Was that an honest test for me?” I really don't know, but all I know is that "honest is the best policy" every time. (Don't get me wrong, I have done my fair share of dishonesty just as everyone has.).

My Twitter colleague Shauna C @InspiredVirtue believes it’s a test. She retweets: "That was a test! Yes, I would have returned it. You'll be rewarded much greater for doing so!"

Suzanne Forte @swoozie35 also retweeted to say she too "would return the credit."

Similar things happen in business: Some over paid you for an item or service. So, what do you do… keep the extra money, or do you return it? You tendered a $500 bill to purchase an item costing $200. You got back $800 as change, because the seller thought you had tendered a $1,000.

Once again, what do you do - return the extra $600 change or do you keep it. Boy, only God knows what you could do with the extra dollars! There's another truism that says: "What you reap, is what you so!"

So my friends, colleagues, and fellow entrepreneurs my advice to you is simply this: Strive always to be careful of what you sow, because you might just reap a bounty of it!

Finally, it shows that if I hadn't shown how grateful I was for the surprisingly free credit, and then I wouldn't have known that "honesty policy" was being tested I am not surprised I passed the test! Over to you: Have you an "honesty is the best policy" story to tell.  Please share it with us in the comments section below.

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