Integrity Matters Broadcasts

January 11, 2006

Integrity for Generation X'ers

Dear Friends:

Will you help us to expand the integrity conversation with the next generation of leaders, Generation X, before it is too late?

This message, from a veteran policeman, is very disturbing. He said to me: "My boss is a Chief of Police. He predicts that ethical behavior is on the decline among police officers; at least as it was defined in your book, Integrity Matters. Too many younger police officers are becoming increasingly permissive; not wanting to supervise by making judgment calls and risking losing their popularity with peers. Fun times with members of their work groups are often more important to them than rewards and recognition that might come from personal and professional leadership growth. It seems to my boss and me that some younger members of our police department (middle management who are Generation X'ers of today) are running from accountability. We observe them standing by while our justice system - at least the police work side of the process - spirals downward. We are concerned. This is an integrity issue and it needs to be addressed, soon."

If Generation X'ers are abdicating responsibility (not just on police forces but in other areas as well) beyond his city in the Midwest - modern culture is moving down a path that could lead to increased crime and corruption - pervasive and demoralizing - and certainly more destructive - than might have been imagined. So, what can be done?

Solution: step back, determine what you can pass along, set aside adequate time and teach the next generation; learning as you teach. Some of the disappointing behaviors being described were have been modeled by those to whom these younger people have been watching in many important positions throughout society. Fortunately, many of those we know have recognized the signals and are attempting to stem the tide of cynicism and isolation of younger people. They are returning to classrooms, at many levels, to teach, more than content; they are modeling character. Those of you who have been investing in youth have inspired me. In 2004: I was approached by the Boys and Girls Clubs of Monterey County, California:; and in 2005: an invitation was extended for me to provide a program for parents at St. Andrew's School in Los Gatos, California, applying integrity-centered parenting insights that I had gained by listening to young people who made- very practical - our Eight Attributes of an Integrity-Centered Organization:

On Saturday, February 11, 2006, at 11:00 a.m at the request of the Student Government Association of my alma mater, Elmhurst College, in Elmhurst, Illinois, I will speak about Integrity in Leadership. These young people very much want the public - folks like you who are reading this - to attend. Student leaders want to know how to find integrity-centered organizations - as places to work; integrity-centered mentors and bosses - to emulate. They want answers before they are further infected by the counter-productive attitudes (and illustrations) of those who would corrupt the system - from disgusting pedophiles and corrupt politicians to profiteering crooks and lying media powerbrokers. Maybe you, or someone you know and respect in the greater Chicago area, might attend, confirming for these young people that the vast majority of those engaged in leadership are decent and hard working.

Yes, my presentation has been prepared. However, the notes that will be brought home will likely become a part of the next Broadcast; offering our readers even greater value. It does really start and end with listening.

Perhaps you and your friends, or those you know in the Chicago area, would be able to attend. If you can, please contact the Elmhurst College Student Government Association, using the information below. It will be good to see you and /or meet your friends who share a concern that we must provide integrity guidance for Generation X'ers and those who may be older or younger and need reminding that verbal handshakes are still legitimate ways to operate. Intending to avoid coming across as self-righteous, it is wise to remember that "we teach best what we most need to learn" and that means I should teach patience.

The Vision of the Bracher Center for Integrity in Leadership remains the same: restore integrity through insight. And this means to educate, nurture and support "a world in which people do what they say, are forthright in their communications, and a handshake solidifies any promise."



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