The Ethics Coach on Dealing With Backstabbing What to do when someone you trust betrays you and how to address a competitor who cops to unethical behavior.
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Q: How do you deal with a person who moves in on your clients or opportunities after you invited him into your inner circle? Worst of all, he did it by bad-mouthing me.
A: That's the danger of giving a potential competitor a seat at your table before you know how he or she actually does business. Inviting this person into your "inner circle" implicitly validated him to your group. Sounds like he interpreted your sponsorship as routine networking, with no loyalty owed--and that he saw your clients and prospects as fair game, with smack talk as his go-to marketing strategy.