The 4-Way Test
Of the things we think, say or do:
Is it the TRUTH?
Is it FAIR to all concerned?
Will it build GOODWILL and BETTER FRIENDSHIPS?
Will it be BENEFICIAL to all concerned?
From the earliest days of the organization, Rotarians were concerned with promoting high ethical standards in their professional lives. One of the world's most widely printed and quoted statements of business ethics is The 4-Way Test, which was created in 1932 by Rotarian Herbert J. Taylor (who later served as RI president) when he was asked to take charge of a company that was facing bankruptcy. This 24-word code of ethics for employees to follow in their business and professional lives became the guide for sales, production, advertising, and all relations with dealers and customers, and the survival of the company is credited to this simple philosophy. Adopted by Rotary in 1943, The 4-Way Test has been translated into more than a hundred languages and published in thousands of ways.(1)
The following remarks were made by Centennial President Phil Hammond on June 28, 2005.
What is Rotary To Me?
The Four Way Test
IS IT THE TRUTH?
Rumors, malicious innuendo, false statements to benefit yourself, inaccurate words and financial statements to benefit your business and many other inaccuracies only complicate our lives and hurt other people.
IS IT FAIR TO ALL CONCERNED?
Do our actions, our words, our behaviours take into consideration other people. Do we favor one group of people over other groups? Are our actions designed to hurt others? Do we search for all the facts before believing rumors, innuendo, and self-aggrandizing statements from others?
WILL IT BUILD GOOD WILL AND BETER FRIENDSHIPS?
Do we go out of our way to meet people as they are and enjoy the richness of their personalities? Do we accept that there are many differences among us that make us unique and add to the richness of life? Do we accept others and extend the hand of friendship to those who are different from us?
WILL IT BE BENEFICIAL TO ALL CONCERNED?
Will our words and actions help others grow? Are we working to help all improve in our skills and abilities in order to raise the level of consciousness, feelings of empathy toward others and feelings of self- worth within ourselves and others?
The Rotary Motto
SERVICE ABOVE SELF?
Do we remember that we will always get more of what we want by helping others get what they want? Or, are we more concerned with personal benefits and make them the goals of our lives with little thought of the effect on others?
It is interesting to note that all the words above can be summarized into the Great Commandment - Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
Information on this page came from:
(1)The The 4-Way Test page on the Rotary International web site.
(2)A Speech by Centennial President Phil Hammond on June 28, 2005