Wednesday, June 25, 2014
The Importance of Business Integrity in the 21st Century
Integrity. This simple noun is defined as: the quality of being honest and having strong moral principles; consistency of actions, values, methods, measures and principles. Honest and trustworthy people strive to ensure that their integrity is intact. They remain accountable for their own and their business' actions. Though seemingly, in this 21st century, integrity is becoming something of an antiquity, which is very troubling to me and it should also trouble you.
My biggest complaint about doing business with 21st century is toward the people who do not keep dates or appointment times, or return phone calls when they state that they will call at such and such time. To me, if you set up a date and time for a meeting, telephone conference, or any other thing, you had better do it, or at the very least inform the other party the need for postponement or rescheduling. There is absolutely no excuse not to do this in this Smartphone, text message, and email, always connected day and age, as it was and still is a common courtesy to do so.
From my prospective as a business owner and entrepreneur, I see the younger and also the older generations having a "see how important I am" attitude, vice taking care of business, by doing exactly what they say they will do and proving to all that they are a vital link in the collaboration at hand. One must remember that others on your team or in the other business entities, have set aside time, which is also money in a business sense, to meet or collaborate with you, be it in person, over a teleconference, or even in a Google Hangout. This is called respect, and we as business owners owe it to each other, and each deserve it from one another. Really it comes down to this: no one is more important than any another person, except in one's own head. Do what is right; not what is easy. This should be the credo of all of humanity in life and in business.
I have read several blog posts of late relating to this very topic. I have found a consensus, or list of signs, that show that you may be exhibiting proof to others that you lack integrity in your business and personal life:
1. Selfishness: You feel yourself so important that you mentally justify to yourself that the other person will understand why you are blowing him or her off. In the business world it is your people or team who helps you to get things done; be it emotionally, financially, or physically. By not showing coworkers or customers the respect of returning their calls, not attending planned meetings, or not adding the required input into a project, you are selfishly ostracizing yourself from your team, your customers, and a project's success, with the thought that it is okay to do this. People with integrity have empathy and communication with each other.
2. Dishonestly: You hide things, overstate your abilities, side step the task at hand, and make excuses as to hide a defect or real reason why something isn't as you stated it would be. In the small business arena this can be disastrous. For example, if you as a team member state that a phase for a project is fully tested and finished, but this is not true, as you know that you do not fully understand the specifications for the project and worse, you do not ask questions to become competent in the understanding of these specifications this effects the project as a whole, and can bring the project to a halt, if not crash it, especially when the project's deadline is at hand. People with integrity work with other people as true contributors to the project and know their limitations.
3. Mendaciousness: Your intentions do not match your results. You state one thing and do an entirely different thing without consulting others involved. For example, you tell your business partner that you will ensure that a product or material meets a certain durability or safety standard, but you find that it does not, and then you use it anyway because you can get a good deal on the cost of this material or product, all without consulting your business partner. People with integrity are part of the team, not the lone wolf doing his or her own thing.
4. False affability: You make frequent compromises in a setting to be genial. You adopt new sets of values to impress new friends. You lack the consistency required to build long-term trust with others. For example, you are cordial with one set of business clients yet when they are not around, you deride them with other business clients in the guise of drumming up business. Or you have nothing but praise for the people in your business division yet carp about them to your superiors in the hope of getting a potential promotion. People with integrity know that you can’t be all things to all people and trust is the biggest asset that you can have.
With respect and trust, the word integrity can actually mean something in the real world of personal space and business. Without integrity, we are all just playing the game of "winner takes all" but then what? In the end after all is said and done, all we have is our integrity.
I invite you to visit and contact Controlled Capture Systems to discuss your project requirements and specifications. Together we can bring success and simplicity to your product dream with integrity.