Rotary started as a business person's club . Over the years it has developed a set of guiding principles* and ethics:

The Four Way Test

of the things we think, say, and do:
 
  • Is it the Truth?
  • Is it Fair to all concerned?
  • Does it Build Good Will and Better Friendships?
  • Is it Beneficial to all concerned?
 

Object of Rotary

The Object of Rotary is to encourage and foster the ideal of service as a basis of worthy enterprise and, in particular, to encourage and foster:
 
  • FIRST: The development of acquaintance as an opportunity for service;

  • SECOND: High ethical standards in business and professions; the recognition of the worthiness of all useful occupations; and the dignifying of each Rotarian’s occupation as an opportunity to serve society;

  • THIRD: The application of the ideal of service in each Rotarian’s personal, business, and community life;

  • FOURTH: The advancement of international understanding, goodwill, and peace through a world fellowship of business and professional persons united in the ideal of service.