Integrity: A Leader’s Most Important Quality

Honesty and Integrity really are the best policies

Honesty and Integrity really are the best policies

Photo by tricky ™

In a recent survey I read, businessmen were asked what they thought was the most important quality of a leader. The overwhelming response was integrity and honesty. We hear about so many business leaders and even Christian leaders who have shown by their poor choices that they have lost their integrity. It would seem that the idea of integrity and honesty had been lost, but as it turns out, it is extremely valued maybe even more so as it seems to be more rare these days.

When a leader has integrity, it means that they set a good example in all aspects of their life. Whether they are at work, home, on vacation, or even alone, they live and act honestly and responsibly. They set an example for others to follow without even trying to, and people will follow.

The good news about integrity, or maybe the bad news for some, is that it is something you can work at and become better at exemplifying and thus, also lose if you stop trying.  It has been said that it is something that takes a life time to build and can be lost in an instant.

You gain integrity through a lifelong process of being honest in every aspect of your life. Yet to do this on our own would be impossible, it takes God’s transforming power to help mold you into a more Christ-like person.

God wants you to have integrity and to live an honest life in everything you do.

This reminds me of a story my dad told me about a coworker of his who was extremely honest. This coworker worked for the US Government and had a desk and office with office supplies like pens and paper available for his use. This man was so honest that he actually had a separate pen for taking personal, non-government notes. So whenever he wanted to write something down that was not related to his work, he would use his own pen.

Now this might be a little extreme, but this does show this man’s passion and integrity. He wanted to make sure that he did nothing even remotely questionable, such as using government ink for personal purposes.

So are you honest in every aspect of your life? Are you willing to let God help you become a man or woman of integrity and honesty? Are there areas in your life right now where you have been lacking integrity.  If there is something nagging against your conscience, do not sweep the thought away but take some time to think about it, talk to a friend who will be upfront with you or bring the issue to God.

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