Integrity Works in Business

One thing I heard today in a lecture on integrity is that without integrity, sometimes a business can succeed for awhile, but it always crashes. Without integrity, ultimately, things start to fail.

And today I was reading a personal statement by Don Burleson of Burleson Consulting. He was saying he goes out of his way to be sure that every person he hires and every way of doing business is imbued with integrity. He wrote:
I built my business on my personal integrity. More than 80% of my business is from repeat clients and referrals. Word gets around. If say that I will do something, it’s going to get done, and it’s a sad reflection on society that my success is due in large-part to the lack of integrity among my competition.

My parents died when I was a teenager, and even when I was as poor as a church mouse, I never, ever, paid a bill late. In college, my prized Nikon camera has made innumerable visits to the pawn shop so that I always paid my debts on-time, every time.

Even today, I do a credit check on all my new job applicants and I don’t look favorably upon late-payment of loans. Even parking tickets bother me. Today, my staff is over-represented with people who share my moral convictions, and I make no apologies for tossing-away applicants with any sign of moral turpitude.

This is another way of looking at the rewards of integrity. It seems in every way (except some aspects of the extreme short term), integrity works and non-integrity makes things go wrong. At least, that's the way to bet. It feels good too.

Adam Khan is the author of Self-Reliance, Translated and Principles For Personal Growth. Follow his podcast, The Adam Bomb.

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