If Only There Was a Test for a Person’s Ethical Compass

Moral Compass

I’ve been reading all the blogs lately talking about what’s wrong with the profession.

People want to raise the bar for entry into the profession because they believe that higher education and training is answer to the public perception problem.

I have advocated that the answer lies in holding the brokers responsible for the activities of his/her agents and that we need to hold each other to a higher standard of practice.  While both of these would help curb the unethical practices that cause much of our problem, it would only do so retroactively.

What we really need is a test for a person’s ethical compass.  If only there was a way to determine what people would do in a number of given situations prior to licensing we could effectively weed out the undesirable people long before they could cause problems for the rest of us.

Wouldn’t this be grand?

It sounds a bit like the “Precogs” in Stephen Spielberg’s “Minority Report.”  The “precogs” could “see” a murder before it happened and the police were able to arrest the person for a crime that would have happened in the future.  As a result there had not been a murder in Washington DC for a number of years.

While Pre-Crime appears to have created a Utopia of sorts, we find out just how flawed it really is when the “precogs” see the character played by Tom Cruise commit a murder. In the end he does not commit the murder and the flawed system is terminated, all those convicted of pre-crimes are released, and the “precogs” live out their lives on a small island isolated from people.

Sadly we can’t test for a person’s ethical compass.  What we can do as a group is to watch for people who act unethically and then file complaints with the appropriate association or state licensing board.  Until we start to really self regulate our collective behavior, we’re not going to solve the public perception issue.

PS – Updated moral to ethical.

About Tom Branch

Tom Branch has written 597 posts in this blog.


Have you ever just met someone, but felt you like you'd known him for years? That's what most people experience with Tom. He has a knack for making folks feel right at home. After 21 years in the Air Force, loyalty and honesty are the foundation of everything Tom does. In addition to being a Texas Real Estate Broker, Tom is a Certified Distressed Property Expert (CDPE) and a Short Sales & Foreclosure Resource (SFR).

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