The integrity chain is a simple concept that serves individuals and businesses over the long haul.
Thanks to my friend, Dr. Ralph James, the author of The Integrity Chain, for his thoughts on integrity and how integrity creates trust, which leads to repeat business which results in profitability. While Ralph wrote this book for the construction industry, the principles apply to anyone in business.
The following are his suggestions and what I try to do to build integrity with everyone with whom I work:
Show up on time, every time.
Write down things I've been requested to do, do them, and let the person who made the request know it has been done.
Keep all promises or explain the difficulty to the other party as soon as you are aware of your inability to keep the promise.
Focus on performance.
See if anything about my behavior is inconsistent that will cause confusion or distrust.
Communicate frequently with everyone to remove doubt about the integrity of the system caused by lack of information -- be transparent.
Do not cover up bad news -- provide a solution to the problem.
Fix processes rather than blame people.
Review policy statements to ensure they are consistent with actions.
Control the rate of change in the company culture so people do not lose confidence because of too much change too quickly.
Maintain an open-door policy.
Work through channels rather than around channels to maintain the integrity of the reporting process.
Stick with people over the long haul.
Admit mistakes and use mistakes as an opportunity for improvement. I'm fond of saying, "Make mistakes early and often, just don't make the same mistake twice." This is consistent with the DevOps mantra - "Fail fast and iterate."
Insist on honesty in all dealings since my reputation, and the reputation of my business, are essential to success. I will admit being too honest will not endear you to everyone all the time; however, they will know you are saying what's on your mind rather than being "politically correct."
Which of these do you do to demonstrate integrity?
Do you promote integrity in your workplace?