The bottom line when it comes to integrity is that it allows others to trust you. And without trust, you have nothing. It is the key to becoming a person of influence.”
― John C. Maxwell
Has integrity become a thing of the past? We have people running for high political office that have proved that they cannot be trusted. We continue to see athletes get caught using illegal performance enhancing drugs. And we see back room deals bring top leaders down.
But integrity is still essential to anyone who wants to influence others. The number one question that followers need answered is “Can I trust you?” And as Cheryl Biehl has so clearly pointed out:
“One of the realities of life is that if you can’t trust a person at all points, you can’t truly trust him or her at any point.”
How can you know that you are a trustworthy person?
First, you must commit yourself to being honest and reliable
Integrity is not something that just happens. You must keep your promises and do what you say you’ll do.
Earl Nightingale said, “If honesty did not exist, it would have to be invented, as it is the surest way of getting rich.”
For almost 20 years, I was a partner with my father in the Professional Land Surveying firm of Wilson & Neal. I remember my father standing toe to toe, arguing with our insurance rep. We had just been told that we could never admit a mistake on our part or our liability insurance would be void. Dad had always run his business and life with integrity and this didn’t sit well with him.
“Do you mean that I should NOT admit that we made a mistake? That I should deny it and lie to my client?”
“Well, if you want your insurance to be valid, then you may have to.”
“I would rather have my principles be valid.”
Dad had made a decision years ago to be a man of principle.
Choose today to live by a strict moral code, and determine to stick with it no matter what happens.
Second, make the decision NOW that you do not have a price.
In 1998, the City of Winkler, Manitoba voted VLTs out of their community. They knew that this meant they would lose out on their share of VLT revenues but they decided they did not want to profit from the pain of others.
They did not receive a percentage of local VLT revenues but were still offered community grants in the amount of $120,000 to $130,000.00. They did not accept this money either. While it was a substantial amount of money , the mayor and council stayed with the decision of the populous of not taking money from lotteries.
They could have easily taken the money and made some excuse for doing so but they kept their integrity.
This is NOT a question of whether or not VLTs and gambling income is good or bad. It is about integrity and saying that you don’t have a price.