There are a lot of good words. Courage, confidence, vision, loyalty, humility, passion, intelligence, character.
But if everything rises and falls on leadership, what one ingredient, if missing, would cause a leader to fail?
The dictionary has an entry, but words can’t define it. It’s only real when it’s lived out. It’s an alignment of believing in what is true and good and right with actions that are an outward manifestation of what we are anchored to internally. Integrity is reflected in intentional living and results in trust. Trusting ourselves is the door to receiving the trust of others.
I’ve been pondering the weighty subject of integrity as I prepared to write this post and something interesting happened. Within 3 days, 3 people voiced to me their frustration over lack of integrity in people that call themselves leaders. (There’s a world of difference in having a title in being an authentic leader.) All 3 people described the same scenario – a seemingly simple one. Person A told Person B they would do something, as in accepting responsibility to show up and fulfill a task. They didn’t keep their word. Excuses, masked as reasons, were given. We all know life happens and there are times you simply can’t fulfill an obligation. But when that becomes a lifestyle, it’s time for a gut-check.
Where are those you can count on?
The frustration of teaming with someone who doesn’t keep their word is like rock climbing with someone who is inexperienced and inattentive. Not a secure feeling and not a position I want to put myself in. It’s scary and downright dangerous to climb with folks like that – especially if you want to climb high.
Integrity. Webster’s Dictionary calls it “adherence to a code of moral, artistic or other values” or “the quality or state of being complete or undivided: completeness.”
If you want to be around people that have integrity, be one. Be the standard bearer.
When your values are clear, every decision is easier. Strategies change, but principles don’t.
Hold fast to integrity. You will be a light in the darkness – a valuable leader and trusted friend. The mountain awaits – let’s climb.
Good values within you + good people around you + good instincts to guide you = Success In Life
(From an interview with John Spence and Tom Morris)