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Thought Leaders Unpacked -> Integrity #1: The Three Essentials

thought-leadersCompetence. Alliances. Character. The “three essentials.”

While affirming the crucial importance of the first two characteristics of successful people, Henry Cloud introduces his book, Integrity: The Courage to Meet the Demands of Reality, with the spotlight on character.

Integrity, by Henry CloudThe significance of this insight to these times of economic turmoil is huge. I would suggest that it was competent, well-connected professionals who lacked the third essential, character, who got us into this mess. People who could carry out their functions and leverage the systems with spectacular agility, but who did not know for what or for whom (other than themselves) or to what end they worked so hard.

The timing for such a book as this could not be more significant. The value of such a discussion amongst people trying to find our way in the workplace cannot be overestimated.

We suddenly find ourselves no longer able to maintain the myth (which some of us have been battling for years) of the driven, highly leveraged, people-are-commodities approach to creating the illusion of short-term profits.

Key in this introductory chapter is the distinction between integrity understood as an issue of morals or ethics versus integrity being understood an issue of performance and the character required to sustain and guide it.

How do you strengthen your character? How do you measure what sort of person you are becoming?
Where in your staff training do you provide resources for character development?

How might an emphasis on integrity, performance and character change how you approach training, performance evaluations, and leadership development?

Let’s get a conversation going. We need to pause and reflect on these issues. Get outside the routines that blind us to alternatives. Interact with people with backgrounds, contexts and approaches different than our own.

Contribute your thoughts below.

Each Friday I post my reflections from one chapter of Integrity: The Courage to Meet the Demands of Reality by Henry Cloud. If you are just joining the discussion now, welcome! Catch up on the entire series here.


Here's My Thought...


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