Integrity is one of those qualities that people like to think of themselves as having, but do they? Having integrity is the path less traveled and an absolute. You either uphold the highest standards of integrity, regardless of what people think, say, or do, or you don’t have it. Integrity comes down to telling yourself the truth and then exuding this internalized honesty to the world. We can’t control how the world receives us, but we can stay true to our integrity, which means doing what is right by the highest of standards we set for ourselves. Like most attributes, integrity is an inside out experience, and it’s not for sale. I’ve had situations along the way where taking a less than integrity-based approach would have been much easier, but the idea ran contradictory to who I want to become with my life. Warren Buffett once said, “In looking for people to hire, look for three qualities: integrity, intelligence and energy. And if they don’t have the first, the other two will kill you.”
I love Buffett’s philosophy because I believe it’s at the heart of how we operate at GlobalStar Consulting. We may not win every deal as a result of staying true to our integrity, but what we are building is on solid footing. Because, as Buffett suggested you can have energized intelligent people coming and going, but if they operate outside of the integrity you are attempting to build or have established, then you are doomed to fail. Having integrity is a value-based proposition in which you are choosing adherence to thoughts and actions that are aligned with higher ideals and a greater truth, instead of some sort of personal gain. It means staying to true to your team members, partners, and clients, no matter what. It’s creating an environment where people on every front never question whether we have one another’s backs. We just do!
A couple of years ago we had a very productive meeting with one of our top business partners. The cohesion everyone felt was an unsaid sort of integrity thing. It was more of a knowing than an articulation. It had been a long road up to that point, but we never wavered in staying true to our integrity-based principles. There came a point in the meeting that I will never forget. We were near the end and wrapping things up when the lead partner VP said something that made my eyes well up. She said, “I believe the good guys win in the end, and I think you guys are the good guys.” In my 26+ plus years in the Infor ERP space, no comment has had a greater impact than her words that day. To say the least, we will always have her back and backs of everyone within her organization. When you notice someone operating in an integrity-based manner, take the time to recognize it, because it is the exception.