Consider This

Robert Stevenson’s Thoughts on the Pursuit of Excellence

Bottom of the Basket

November 15, 2020

by Robert Stevenson

It’s just a simple purchase … a basket of peaches at the local farmers’ market. The peaches on the top, and even in the middle are all beautiful …but the farmer’s character is revealed with the fruit they placed on the bottom of the basket. The fruit on the bottom should be just as good as the fruit on top, but a farmer of weak character will put the bruised (damaged) fruit on the bottom.

A butcher can put the best-looking side of the steak face up, so you see it through the clear plastic, but when you get home, you find the underneath side full of gristle and fat; again, a weak character is revealed.

Character, or should I say – lack thereof – is being revealed to us daily. From the house painter who said they would prime before they painted (and they didn’t), to the mechanic who replaces your carburetor when only the fuel line was clogged. Their character has just been revealed; they chose to cheat you.

Clothes style change, fads change, hair styles change, popular music choices change, technology changes, car models change, expectations, salaries and opinions all change … but good character should never change. Actions indicate CHARACTER … not words. Here is a short poem I wrote about the importance I place on character.

Fame is fleeting, popularity, notoriety
and wealth can leave you too.
Even your good health can slip away
and there’s nothing you can do.
There are those who will sing your praises
for what you did today.
Then curse your actions tomorrow …
and there’s nothing you can say.
So, heed my words carefully,
they are simple but oh so true.
You reveal your character daily
in everything you do.
Guard your thoughts, words and actions,
for they shout loudly who you are.
Your actions reveal your character
and will be seen both near and far.
And when you leave this earth,
there is but one thing that will endure.
Your character will be the mark you leave,
on this you can be sure.

Good character isn’t hard to identify … it is simply doing the right thing even when it may be the hardest thing to do. Good, sound, strong, morale character is a choice … you can choose to have it or not. Isn’t it amazing what just one bad peach says about a person.

Your Choices Define Your Character
So, Choose Wisely

"Your only true security in life
is your ability to perform."

About the Author

Robert Stevenson is an expert at building a high-performance business culture, improving efficiency, and accelerating growth. He is one of the most widely sought-after speakers in the world today, as well as a best-selling author. He has owned five companies, sold internationally in over 20 countries. Robert has spoken to over 2,500 companies throughout the world and his research in the area of corporate and entrepreneurial success is extensive. Over 2 million people have benefitted from his powerful, practical, and thought-provoking programs. He is a true master at blending facts, inspiration, conviction, and humor into all his programs.

Companies like FedEx, Prudential, Lockheed Martin, Anheuser-Busch, Chevron, American Express, and Berkshire Hathaway continue to rely on him for a fresh, unique perspective on businesses’ most crucial issues. To learn more about Robert and what he can do for your team visit his website at

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