The simple concepts " integrity, honesty " remain important |

The simple concepts " integrity, honesty " remain important

Tressa O'Lea

In the early 1990’s, I had the pleasure of attending a business seminar in Dallas called “Scoreboard Management.” The premise of “Scoreboard” was based on this definition of honesty:?”Not lying, stealing; not taking unfair advantage of; and exact duplication of what is.”

This definition was so decent and pure to me that I understood honesty on a deeper level. Since that seminar, I have not only tried to uphold this level of honesty on a personal level, but I preach it and practice it in my business.

It is more difficult than it sounds! Oh, the not lying and stealing part is easily understood and easy to follow, but when your business is sales, where is the line of “taking unfair advantage of” drawn? And as a person who loves a story, “exact duplication of what is” requires no exaggeration, no political twist, and no spin. Sounding a bit more difficult?

This concept has served me very well. Working with others, dealing with the public, being involved in many organizations and looking in the mirror are all easier when you work from complete honesty.

What continues to be heartbreaking and a source of disappointment is not everyone subscribes to honesty. However, even if the whole world enjoys a spin, everyone in the universe expects or has an excuse and/or alibi and no one will tell you the absolute truth, for me and my business the truth is the only way I want to live.

The benefits of having your integrity intact cannot begin to be measured. The peacefulness that you receive when you do what is right, (especially when it is not the easy thing to do or being given back), is one of the many blessings honesty and integrity will bring to your life.

Recently, I had the misfortune of a mutiny in my office. Come to find out (sometimes the truth takes a while to reach you), there was backstabbing, negativity and a lot of judging going on behind the scenes. Sadder still, it seems to have been generated by an employee that had over two years service with me, had met many goals, including bonus and overrides and won two free seven-day cruises in two years. As heartbreaking as it is, I am happy to be left with my honesty and integrity.

What the lesson also brought me is a renewed sense of faith and hope that justice will prevail, that the universe will protect goodness and try as you might all the people are not going to practice an honest existence. That responsibility is not mine, but theirs, to not just hear the words but be the best person they can be.

In the end, we are left with our integrity, our reputation and decency. Take a look at how you portray yourself and represent your business. Are there ways you could be more honest and forthcoming? When you fib at making a luncheon reservation, do you feel better for the $5 savings, worse for fudging on the truth or do you dismiss it as a harmless “white lie”? When someone asks you a question, do you think about what you think they want to hear or does the same story, the truth, roll from you easily?

We have all heard “all you have is your name.” The excuses that this may no longer be valid range from the pathetic, “Well, so and so is guilty too,” to “No one will find out,” to pure, and disgusting greed.

If you are in the business community and plan on staying there, I urge you to be honest and ethical above all else. I encourage you to live honestly and represent yourself with decency and integrity. You may not close a sale today because you were forthcoming with an answer someone may not have wanted to hear, but you will still be here tomorrow and the day after.

Integrity is how you protect your good name and build a strong business for the long-term. Honesty is as important today as it was yesterday and will be even more important to you and those you serve tomorrow.

Tressa O’Lear is president of Together, a Reno company that specializes in personal introductions and matchmaking.


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