Leadership Integrity is leading with a moral purpose. Many companies are trying to do this, and it helps shape how the public views them.
Case in point, the western world was founded by Christians, and through Christian beliefs. Hospitals were developed because monks, priests, and nuns took care of the elderly and the sick.
These places were all birthed out of Leadership with a moral purpose. The people who formed our society today gave us building blocks, and these building blocks are what we get to build on.
Our morality might be different. But our focus should be similar. When your company focuses on leadership integrity, you’ll see massive changes in the people who follow.
I was told a story once that the word integrity comes from the Latin word Integra. It was used by Roman soldiers on the battlefield and meant to protect your heart. If a roman soldier didn’t protect his heart on the battlefield, he died.
The same goes for leaders. If you have no leadership integrity, and you make a foolish choice. You lose your heart.
Your integrity is the glue that holds your place in leadership together. Without that glue, you are nothing.
Who Will Follow A Lying Leader?
Will You Follow A Leader That Takes You For Granted?
Do People Like Leaders Who Hoard All The Glory?
What if your leader never does anything to help the team?
These are all leadership examples I’ve come across in my life. I can look at each one of those questions and attach 2-3 names minimum to them. While I’ve forgiven them, it doesn’t mean I have to be like them.
You have a choice, what kind of leader will you be? Will you lead by fear or lead by action?
This is a choice you have to make.
What Happens When You Lack Leadership Integrity?
I might have written about this before but before I was in college, I was hired to be a produce manager at my local Sams Club. The first day I walked into my department was a wake-up call.
The morale was horrible, people had been told I was going to fire them, and everyone was on the verge of quitting.
What Do You Do In This Situation?
I smiled, picked up a box of tomatoes, and worked alongside my new team. By the end of the day, they had slight respect for me. I kept up with them and didn’t threaten, abuse, or yell at them.
When you treat people with respect. They will repay you in kind. Leadership with integrity is by far a great skill to have.
How Do You Use Leadership Integrity?
In the story above I wrote about how I worked alongside my crew. That might be the only way to earn their trust and show proper leadership integrity to them. For the next 6 months, I did this and received great traction with everybody. However, there was one guy on my crew that didn’t like me.
In fact one time he said I really hate you. (To my face)
A lot of people would throw in the towel here, but I’d already learned that he wanted my job, and I was brought in. He’d applied for it and was turned down. he saw me as an obstacle in his career. He had other issues as well, but I’m not getting into those.
Once he was honest, and said, “I hate you.” I smiled at him and gave him my thanks for being honest.
Not many people were honest with me during that time. It was frustrating. To hear an honest sentence, even when it was a sentence I didn’t want to hear was refreshing.
So I asked him to help me train my new associates. I wanted his expertise and honesty. Years later, when I left the department. He was still there, and one of my best workers.
What Are The 5 Attributes Of Leadership Integrity?
Honesty: You can’t have integrity without honesty. Now, this doesn’t mean you have to tell people everything, you have to have some tact. but outright lying to people should be prohibited. When you are honest. Your people will follow suit, and you’ll be able to lead easier and efficiently.
Take Responsibility For Your Actions/Choices: One of my biggest pet peeves stems from leaders who make choices but don’t accept the consequences. You see this happen all the time in politics. Republicans And Democrats Do it. They make a choice, vote on it, and then say they weren’t informed. Who’s fault is that? Do some research before you make a choice and if the choice goes south. Admit you were wrong and apologize. It’ll go a long way when you have leadership with integrity.
Let The Needs Of The Team Go Above Yours: Most of my examples are from the workplace and take this one with a grain of salt. Your private life and work life should be separate, otherwise, you’ll go crazy. However your team needs to know you’re there for them, and you’ll do whatever it takes to help them get the job done. Make sure they feel empowered and make sure they have everything they need to succeed.
Respect Everyone: Whether you’re talking with a janitor or a CEO, that person still needs to be respected and treated the same. Never put someone down because of their station in life. You don’t know the battles they’re fighting, and a smile can go a long way.
Give The Benefit Of The Doubt: Trust the people below you, until they give you reason not to. When you give the benefit of the doubt you’re sowing seeds of respect in their life, and they’ll reward you for it.
Leadership Integrity And Character.
The integrity of character is choosing what is right, even when everyone else is going the wrong way. You make a decision and stick by it unless you find out you’re wrong.
However, if you believe you’re right. Don’t let others sway you, even if by others it’s everyone. Leadership integrity can get lonely, but it will eventually be worth it.
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Sterling grew up in the suburbs of Minneapolis. As a kid he loved skateboarding but mostly did street riding. He injured his ankle badly when he dropped into his first half pipe. His skateboarding slowed down after that, but he still loved the sport.
While in his 20's he needed to make a change, so he did some world traveling with a motivational speaking group. Through it all, he visited 46 states and 3 continents and eventually lived in Mississippi. In 2005, Hurricane Katrina tore through the state. He jumped into the fray, helping mobilize support for the evacuees of New Orleans & The Gulf Coast. During the aftermath he helped run a shelter and drove food & medical supplies to affected areas by truck. Currently he lives in Minneapolis, runs his snowboard shop, and shreds Vail Whenever he can.