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Acting with Integrity

Integrity is an important, but often overlooked, factor in career success. People with integrity tend to stand out favorably from their peers. Having integrity involves being honest, having impulse control, and being reliable.

The importance of honesty

Employers notice and value honesty in employees. Integrity is good for business. On the other hand, employers can’t afford to hire people they don’t trust. The cost to the company could be high.

Honest workers show ethical behavior. You may be tempted to call in sick when you just want to enjoy a day off. But if your employer happens to find out, she will be less likely to trust you because you’ll have shown a history of lying.

If somebody admits a mistake to you or tells you about a problem, you know she’ll be honest with you about other problems. You can trust that person to tell you the truth.

It takes time to trust someone. If an employee follows through on commitments, no matter how small the promise, you know you can trust that person. However, you can’t trust people who don’t follow through.

The importance of impulse control

People who don’t have a lot of integrity have low self-restraint. They aren’t able to delay gratification, even when they can see a reward further down the road. For example, they may call in sick simply because they want to enjoy the first day of spring.

However, people with impulse control think about the consequences before they act. This kind of maturity pays off in the long run.

The importance of reliability

Reliability is an important key to success in any work environment. Reliable people are orderly and complete their assignments on time, whereas erratic people often deliver their assignments late or incomplete.

Supervisors tend to rate reliable people better on reviews than less-dependable workers because reliable people follow the rules, keep up to date on information, and meet deadlines. These are valuable qualities at every level within an organization.

It’s easy to forget how qualities such as reliability, impulse control, and honesty can be so important in work life. Remember, these behaviors strongly contribute to other people’s impressions of you.