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Within the study of leadership, integrity is often rated as the single, most important value of effective leaders; the fundamental quality of a Leader Worth Following. By definition, integrity is consistently doing the right thing for the right reasons, regardless of the circumstances. It means your values align with your behaviors and actions, and therefore, your team, colleagues, clients, family, friends -- everyone who knows you – trusts your character and can count on you to consistently honor your commitments. Perhaps most importantly, integrity builds trust. As Collin Siedor asks in his Leadercast Now video, “Would you follow someone you didn’t trust?”
Examples of Integrity in leadership include:
* Exhibiting consistently ethical behavior in all circumstances
* Making the right decision even when – especially when – it’s difficult
* Rising above organizational politics or gossip
* Proactively and transparently facing tough conversations with clients or colleagues
People with integrity don’t have to think twice about their actions; they do the right thing even when nobody’s looking … even when no one will know.
“Lead your life so that you wouldn’t be ashamed to sell the family parrot to the town gossip.” – Will Rogers, newspaper columnist, social commentator, actor, and humorist
“One of the truest tests of integrity is its blunt refusal to be compromised.” -- Chinua Achebe, Nigerian novelist, poet, professor, and critic.