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7 Examples of Principles

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Principles are foundational rules or guidelines that are useful for making decisions and solving problems. The following are illustrative examples of business principles.


Scientific laws and theories such as Newton's Law of Universal Gravitation that basically says that gravity exists.


The design principle that Less is More or the alternative principle that Less is a Bore. Design principles are often adopted according to the style of a designer and aren't typically universally accepted.


Accounting principles such as GAAP (generally accepted accounting principles) are standards and procedures that are required by law in many instances.

Organizational Culture

It is common for organizations, departments and teams to adopt principles that serve as useful guidelines in a wide range of processes and interactions. For example, a firm might adopt the principle that the customer is always right to guide customer interactions and policy.

Professional Ethics

Principles of ethics that apply to a profession such as doctors, lawyers and engineers.

Standards & Methodologies

It is common for a standard or methodology to be based on foundational principles such as the Manifesto for Agile Software Development.


Individuals may establish professional principles as a tool in their work. Principles can help to avoid overthinking as they serve as guidelines that may simplify decisions. On the negative side, if a principle is wrong or inadequate, this can lead to a large number of poor decisions and outcomes. A common example of a professional principle is think global, act local that suggests that a professional act in the best interests of the firm, stakeholders, communities and planet within the context of their work.
Overview: Principles
Definition (1)
A foundational rule.
Definition (2)
A foundational rule, guideline, idea, fact or framework that has significant implications for decision making and problem solving.
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