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Integrity simply means being honest and having strong moral principles. A simple word that a person must demonstrate strong moral and ethical principles in person and at work. The foundation of a relationship with a colleague is based on integrity and hence trust. So with honesty comes trust and integrity is born.
It is so easy to understand and yet so difficult to act. The word has been widely used, especially in the corporate world, and the last sentence of every benchmark report is “high integrity” and it’s just become lingo everyone wants it but no one owns it.
Why is integrity a difficult problem? Because it’s so easy to preach and provide basic lyrics based on a person’s mannerism and being kind, however, it actually means doing the right thing when no one is watching or the ability to say NO. .
Society & Culture: The same goes for society and culture which have an impact on the way we behave and the level of integrity we have. In a society like ours where we learn to be rude to say no hence the ability to say NO even if it is wrong is compromised. A society where we want all rights and no responsibilities.
Fear: Fear of losing one’s job or fear of impressions formed by superiors is always on the agenda, especially in a tough corporate culture, so how do you maintain integrity?
Educational system: Do we have ethics and moral science as a subject that teaches us the good and bad of society and how to live according to certain principles.
Corporate Culture of Integrity: – The culture of integrity should start at the top and is directly proportional to how the leader conducts themselves and their leadership philosophy. An organization with a culture of integrity will develop trust, thereby increasing loyalty and fostering teamwork and strong camaraderie. When we have “trust” in our relationship with a company, it is usually because the company’s management has created a culture of integrity.
Integrity is not as easy as we perceive it has factors that are deeply rooted in a multitude of factors from society, family, culture from factors beyond our control and so it becomes a difficult problem because staying committed to one’s integrity is a personal one, but it depends on factors beyond one’s control, but the ultimate responsibility rests on the shoulders of the individual. It is also said that integrity takes a lifetime to build and can be destroyed in an instant.
The choice to remain committed to one’s integrity and code of ethics is personal, even in the face of a strong corporate culture that condones, encourages and condones behavior that lacks integrity and is unethical.
The examples are numerous and as recent as the president of Carlos Ghosn who lost his job because of an integrity problem. If you look at Indian businesses, there are a lot of pillars that have fallen from the heights because of a simple to understand thing called integrity. In all these cases, it clearly shows that integrity is part of us, which surely is not as easy as it is claimed.