How Integrity can Build or Break a man
I have walked past this particular shop numerous times when I am shopping for groceries for the house. It is a great shop. They have great store front, a great name coupled with great advertising. People flock in and out of it, a sign for a great and thriving business. However, I have never been in it. My brother said to me the service was bad and I have hung on his word and go to a smaller competitor who makes me feel like ‘King’ when I shop there. They failed to deliver on their promise of heavenly shopping. They have no integrity.
After an extra job, I decided to splash the unexpected income on renovating the house. I went to this talented street side carpenter to do the work. He eagerly accepted the deposit and promised that he would start work tomorrow and finish it by end of week. Still by end of week nothing had been done and the house help had spent the entire week moving stuff in and out of the house in anticipation of his coming. After a month of coercing and threatening him, he finally finished the work.
When friends came over to view the finished worked they were awed by his attention to detail and genius and immediately they requested his number so that he could work on their homes as well. I willingly gave them the number while telling them of how untrustworthy he was. None of them saved his number. There, four young creative executives; well connected clients lost just because he simply failed to DO WHAT HE WAS SUPPOSED TO DO WHEN HE SAID HE WOULD DO IT.
Doing what we are supposed to do when we said we will do it is important if we intend to stay in the game for long. This is integrity. Nothing beats word of mouth and therefore it is important to maintain reputation by matching your actions to your words.
Such traits as keeping time even for the most trivial appointments are important. It shows people that you respect them and their time and most importantly that you value yourself and your time. You have people turning up for meetings an hour late, getting to religious meetings just as they are about to end. Traits such as giving back money you have borrowed are also very important. It’s not only the government that does ‘Credit Profiling’. I like many others have people that I have vowed to never give money, books, CDs and DVDs as they do not return them and I have made it a point to have them blacklisted by my friends too.
A person of Integrity is a person of honesty and where there is honesty success is usually a few blocks away. When I started out in the live events industry, the team leader gave me money to buy food for everyone at a nearby food court near where we were setting up for a show. As we were very busy, I forgot to give her back her change. However the first thing I did next morning when I got to the site was give her back her money. She was so surprised by such honesty that she took me under her wing and most of the jobs that I have picked up have been a direct or indirect result of the good referrals she gave me.
A person of integrity only takes that which they can chew. Are you only able to serve ten clients daily? Then stay with those ten. The mistake that most businesses particularly sole trader ships make is to increase the clientele base without increasing the capacity of the company. The service starts deteriorating and as soon as that happens you lose all your clients both new and old and the business goes broke. This is the dilemma that the carpenter I mentioned earlier had. He took many jobs at one go hoping to increase his income without a workforce to consolidate the growing clientele. He has moved from his roadside workshop and returned to his rural home leaving behind foul-crying clients to whom he owed money.
Integrity entails less talk but more action. Nothing gets done when people talk. Keep quite and work towards your goals and meeting set targets. Also in talk, people tend to overpromise and when the product is delivered, it fails to meet the expectations of the customers. Ensure people of a great product but deliver something that will wow them.
Integrity is staying to your true beliefs, staying principled. It is about having a strong sense of will and saying no or yes when you are supposed to despite contemporaries chanting the contrary. A certain friend of mine does what he says he will do when he says he will do it and he sticks to it whether based religious or personal convictions. Despite us naming him ‘Nerd of the Year’ thrice, he finished college a year and a half earlier than the rest of us. Today he is my support system when I do not want to move away from my targets goals and adopted beliefs.
When we become people of integrity, doing what we said we will do when we said we would do it, we become strong and that strength is power in a society that says one thing but goes on to do another. To stick one’s word is a rare quality which builds trust in people leading to greater relationships. We can tap into these relationships positively and advance our careers, businesses, projects or romantic partnerships to give our lives a meaning.
This is to your success