You’re in the integrity business – regardless of the industry you think you’re in!
Your success is determined by your reputation for making and keeping promises.
Despite its importance, integrity is likely a blind-spot for you. Not because you’re a bad person, but because you haven’t been trained for it.
Most people admit they could be better at “time management” and “being organized.” But few will actually say that they lack integrity. We tend to think other people lack integrity, not ourselves.
Integrity has many dimensions, but to keep it simple think of it as “being true to your word” or “taking responsibility.”
How blind are people to integrity at work? Consider these common utterances:
“I was going to write the draft, but instead I had to fix my printer problem.” Sounds like a fact, but is it really true? How about: “I am sorry I didn’t finish the draft.”
“I’m late because traffic was horrible.” Sounds like something out of your control, but is that really true? How about: “Sorry I am late.”
“It’s not my fault.” If the results you got are not what you were committed to, does it really matter whose fault it is? How about: “I am disappointed we fell short. What can I/we do to succeed?”
Can you hear how the speaker valued self-defense over integrity? People commonly (and unconsciously) use excuses to defend their innocence or cover up a lack of commitment and follow-through.
Our natural tendency is to see when others drop the ball, but not see when we are out of integrity.
Think about it, if you were really committed, wouldn’t you find a way to be on time, do what you say or at least renegotiate your commitments? Sure you would.
If I gave you a million dollars for being on time, you would figure out a way to beat traffic. No doubt.
And yet, in our blindness we think we can get away with the excuses, when in fact other people see them for exactly what they are. Worse yet, their trust in us and our word goes down.
So if you want things to work better in your life and business, take a close look at your integrity first, then train your team on how to be in integrity. Your customers will thank you and refer you again and again.
by Birgit Zacher Hanson