Texas Startup Blog: Web 2.0 and Social Media » Blog Archive » Ironic: No Maternity Leave at CPS?

Have you read the Texas Startup Blog?  It’s really well written.  This article informed me – and gave me the information I needed to take action (for whatever my comments to CPS are worth) 

One of our employees just found out that his wife is having a baby.  He shared with us that his wife’s employer did not provide any paid maternity leave.  She could use her accrued vacation time, but other than that she was on her own.  I was shocked when I learned that she worked for Child Protective Services.  Isn’t that ironic? 


And this post inflamed me because it just shows how short sighted people can be. 

Do ethics matter in business?  Does it matter if it is ethical if it is legal?  Sometimes it is hard to do the right thing, especially when everyone is telling you to do the opposite just because it is legal.  We were working on a very small acquisition at Architel for the last couple of weeks.


It’s an interesting blog with a fairly low volume (just enough, in my opinion).  I recommend it.

Source: Texas Startup Blog: Web 2.0 and Social Media » Blog Archive » Ironic: No Materinity Leave at CPS?


  1. Deannie – you know people read it – it’s quoted on the teleision every day (sometimes even correctly!).

    I agree with you though – treat people like shit and eventually someone is going to shit on you – that’s why I try to get along with people, or walk away from the ones that don’t want to get along.

  2. blah – I meant to say the Bible is the most widely published and available book on the face of the earth today. Whether folks actually read it or not is unknown to me.

  3. @Paul – responses to your thoughts:

    1) Since the Bible is the most widely read book on the face of the earth, I think it is a worthy reference.

    2) Well, if we were to use your reasoning, then you should be able to walk off your roof because you choose to not believe you will have negative consequences. Of course we should refrain from doing what is wrong because we hate that wrong thing, not out of morbid fear for some unknown consequence.

    3) Yes, I have reade the Bible cover to cover. Several times.

  4. @Deannie: also .. 3 things 😉

    1. If this is a universally accepted rule for good behavior, then why make references to the Bible? With your last comment, you seem to, more or less, agree with me that we humans have a certain innate feeling for what is good and right, and don’t really need a ‘holy’ book for it. In fact, there are many ‘rules’ in the good book that we all instinctally feel are ‘not quite right’ (stoning your child to death for disobedience, to just name one of the many like this). I therefore place more trust in people who get their morals from reason and rationality, than in people who blindly follow orders, no matter how horrific they are.

    2. As for reaping negative consequences for bad behavior: I’m not so sure that’s always a fact. The more positive side of this coin, however, I KNOW from experience to true: If you are nice to people, in general, the will be nice to you. Refraining from being bad in order to prevent punishment/retribution, to me, is the wrong standard to live by (it has an air of egotism and cowardliness to it). I would much rather preach to be good just for the pleasure of being/doing good (and you may argue that it, too, has a egotistic side, in that you then can expect people to be nice to you, but at least it lacks the cowardliness of ‘not being bad’).

    3. Not related to anything of the above: just a question, since I’m curious: Have you READ the Bible … COMPLETELY? Cover to cover? Old and New testament?

  5. Hey Paul, what I really wanted to say (but didn’t do a good job of stating) is that the Golden Rule is universally accepted as a standard of good behavior, not necessarily religious at all. Just like the law of gravity, if you walk off the roof of your house you will fall down, with the Golden rule, if you treat people badly, you will surely reap the negative consequences of that choice as well.

  6. Three (just to keep it short) things:

    1. I read what I read? That’s so obvious that I have to assume you meant that I read what you write. In that sense I think it’s unfair of you to expect me to ‘read’ and understand that what you didn’t write due to lack of time or desire.

    2. I never made a reference to religion! I just copied your word ‘evangelist’, and yes, I’m very aware of the usage of that word in the business world. I even know what the word actually means. Let me rephrase my point then by saying the same “if you have to consult ANYONE to check if what you do is ethical…” etc etc.

    3. My comment was the opposite of being “inflammatory”. Just a rational, reasonable, cool and well thought-through observation.

  7. @Paul, inflammitory Paul:

    As usual, you read exactly what you read and don’t consider that there may be more verbiage to the story than I had the time (or desire) to share at the moment.

    In this case, the “Moral Evangilist” basically leads a board consisting of employees, including HR, Engineering, etc. The Moral Evangelist is responsible for reporting back to the BoD about what the “feeling” in the company is about an issue. It’s not a religion based position at all. You may not remember, but I once had a formal title of “Wireless Evangelist” and some short sited and dim-witted HR person made me change it (after an aquisition) because she thought it was a “religious name” (her words).

    You know me well enough to know that is not a role I would take on. I can’t defend God. I’ve seen too many innocent people die to even begin to defend a “God”. Any God.

  8. @Rob: If you need to consult an evangelist to check if what you do is ethical, then, with all due respect, you have a problem!
    Not in that you are unethical yourself, but ethics is subjective. You should go by your OWN ideas of what if good and what is wrong: your evangelist’s idea of that may not line up with yours! Ethics is not a constant of nature, it is not an absolute. For some people it’s VERY ethical, HOLY even, and highly admirable, to fly airplanes into the World Trade Center.

  9. To Deannie I have to confess that I tend to be pretty frightened by people who base their morals, rules and laws on the Bible, the Torah and, especially these days, the Koran. Please, read Deuteronomy again, and tell me if you’re living by all these rules and their morality!
    I’m SURE you will say “Well, no, not by all, some are BEYOND barbaric”, so .. you’re picking and choosing. One might as well get ones morals from “The Lord of the Rings” (not a bad choice!).

  10. That is a first. How rare. And refreshing.

  11. Oh yeah, I’ve seen it. I’ve been in meeting where company officers call the company lawyers to see if something is “legal”. It’s rare that I’ve been in similar meetings where executives ask if something is “moral”.

    I do know of one company though that has a “Morals Evangelist” – and they DO often consult both the lawyers and the evangelist. It’s a company I really like.


  12. Ahh, the conversation about ethics vs legality. I once worked at a firm that was in a turnaround position and the CEO was one of these hard hitting, no holds barred sort of people who was going to meet his goals, no matter what. He (often, IMHO) crossed that line of ethics and barely towed the legal line to satisfy his selfish desires. He was is the loneliest man I have ever known. No one he works with trusts him, not really. Not even his own children.

    He FOREVER changed the way I would think of ethics vs legality. You see, since I honestly believe that the behavorial guidelines one can find in the Bible, Torah or Koran (Love your neighbor as yourself) are not just suggestions, they are our Creator telling us “the way it IS”. Ultimately, you reap what you sow. You choose to ignore the way it is, you will reap the negative consequences of that decision. Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow. But those consequences are waiting for you in the shadows.

    I’ve seen it in action – haven’t you?