Integrity Matters Broadcasts

September 1, 2004


Last month we asked for examples of individuals who had demonstrated graciousness. The response was reassuring. We learned from several of you that there are many decent people, who welcome strangers, treat service providers with dignity, pass along compliments, write thank you notes and listen caringly and compassionately to the concerns of others. Once again, this month, we are soliciting input, from you.

As you know, our first book, Integrity Matters is available in bookstores and on our website, through The issues we addressed have not gone away. Scandals marking the opening of the 21st Century revealed that some of our most influential leaders found it hard to resist the greedy promise of fast millions. These disgraced leaders sacrificed their personal integrity for a fast gain; the tragedy is, they did not need to do this!

True, cheating, with all of its risks, often generates cash. However, playing by the rules creates both wealth and positive cultural impact, and without the risks of public or private shame.

Those individuals who look to us for guidance need to be reassured that there are legitimate and compelling alternatives to the lure of fast money and loose standards. And, yes, we intend to make the case, through interviews and through stories offered by our readers, that for many who have become success, integrity (not saintliness) has served as a guiding principle.

So, here it is again, the request: will you tell us a story of someone you know who has brought integrity-centered leadership into their personal and professional conduct?

Click here to participate in our research about integrity-centered leadership behavior

On the first, the request, thank you, in advance, for your willingness to offer responses back to us. We are looking for one or more examples where you have observed the productivity-enhancing power of our Eight Attributes: Character, Honesty, Openness, Authority, Partnership, Performance, Charity and Graciousness. As you may be aware, we are in the midst of writing our next book, which will address the ultimate pay-off for integrity which is success, in a variety of forms. In addition to citing powerful examples where doing things right in business pays off, we also want to create a constructive website that will serve readers with positive examples to provide to future generations, who are surrounded and hounded by the media's fixation with negative behavior. Integrity will become the beacon for decisions and actions and will provide clear guidance for those in search of intelligent alternatives. On our website we remind ourselves and others: "Integrity is one of several paths; it distinguishes itself from the others because it is the right path and the only one upon which you will never get lost." -- M.H. McKee

Two recently published Integrity Matters columns will bring home the harsh realities of accountability and responsibility - for each person, all the time.

# 1 "When it comes to standards, ask these questions"

Dear Jim:

As I am about to enter college, a major discussion point has been affirmative action. Many universities across America employ an affirmative-action program. I personally believe the best qualified should be accepted regardless of race. Allowing sub-par students admission because they are considered a minority is still a form of racism. Does being politically correct in this situation debase the integrity of our nation's education system?


Long ago, my father passed along an interesting insight. He said that minor surgery happens to other people. When, as a young man, I asked for the meaning of the statement, my father replied, "When a surgeon was cutting on me, the surgery was always major." Other people, however, could call their medical procedures minor. But Dad's were major. Perhaps this inherited perspective has convinced me that when I am placing my life (survival) in the care of other people -- then, just like my Dad, I feel my situation is major, and my requirements for the surgeon's skills and performance are uncompromising.

So, given that simple parental wisdom, what might each individual reader's responses be to the following six questions?

  • What is level of surgical skill do you expect when you are on the operating table?

Click here for the full response

# 2 "University dean's generosity is a life lesson"

Dear Jim:

I am a new student at California State University, Monterey Bay, and very enthused about it because I see that the faculty members' interest in their students starts even before the new school year has begun. Just today I conferred with a dean who offered to meet with me individually to help me develop the right schedule for my classes. I was thrilled. How does this generous action by a dean speak to the integrity of leadership at this institution?


Learning at your new school, California State University at Monterey Bay, has already begun for you, and you have not yet enrolled in your first class. When the dean of an academic institution will make the time to offer personal help, there is an important message being sent: namely, that people are important.
When leaders of an organization make themselves accessible to those who most need them, which in this instance is a first-year student, then the values are clear: Students really do matter, and relationships...

Click here for the full response

Our October Broadcast will address Executive Integrity.

Thank you again, for helping to expand the integrity conversation. Together with your input we are building a legacy of constructive behaviors for current as well as future generations.


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