integrity http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/5488/all en-US Why Doing the Right Thing is Right for the Bottom Line http://www.wisebread.com/small-business/why-doing-the-right-thing-is-right-for-the-bottom-line <div class="field field-type-link field-field-url"> <div class="field-label">Link:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="http://www.openforum.com/idea-hub/topics/lifestyle/article/why-doing-the-right-thing-is-right-for-the-bottom-line-patricia-lotich" target="_blank">http://www.openforum.com/idea-hub/topics/lifestyle/article/why-doing-the-right-t...</a> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/small-business/why-doing-the-right-thing-is-right-for-the-bottom-line" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_000000381585Small.jpg" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="156" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p><a href="http://dictionary.reference.com/">Dictionary.com</a> defines integrity as, &ldquo;adherence to moral and ethical principles; soundness of moral character; honesty....&rdquo; Integrity in a marriage would mean maintaining a trusting and monogamous relationship whereas business integrity would be business practices that are guided by a code of ethical conduct.</p> <p>The success of any organization is built on the confidence and trust of employees, customers and the general public. The only way for an organization to gain that trust is to demonstrate honesty and integrity in everything the organization does. Organizations that operate this way do so because it <a>is the right thing to do </a>and not because of legal requirements. We are all familiar with the fall of Enron and Bernard Madoff's Ponzi scheme. As their unethical business practices came to light, these very successful organizations promptly collapsed.</p> <p>Integrity affects every area of business operations and all customer groups.</p> <p><b>Integrity in Accounting Practices</b></p> <p>Businesses owe it to their employees, customers and shareholders to be honest and transparent with their finances. <a>Organizations that &ldquo;Cook the Books&rdquo;, whether by design or by accident, perform a disservice to everyone. Sloppy accounting is as harmful to a business's ability to perform as the malfeasance of the Enrons and Madoffs. Any organization, large </a>or small, that hopes to stay in business must practice proper and responsible financial management.</p> <p><b>Truth in Selling</b></p> <p>Organizations that aggressively market their products and services are obligated to deliver exactly what they promise. Whether it is a print ad in a magazine or a video ad on television, the product described should always be what is delivered to the customer. We responded to an advertisement for a new car once. The ad showed a great price, but when we got to the dealer, we learned that they were &ldquo;out&rdquo; of that particular car and tried to sell us a different, more expensive model. <a>We bought neither, of course, but the cynical &quot;bait and switch&quot; ploy convinced us never to visit that dealer again.</a></p> <p><b>Management Integrity</b></p> <p>From customer service to employee benefits, management practices are at the core of organizational integrity. Unresolved product or service issues can tarnish the reputation of the organization, and employees recognize the importance of management doing what&rsquo;s right by &quot;walking-the-talk&quot; and following up on promises made. Google was named one of the <a href="http://money.cnn.com/magazines/fortune/bestcompanies/2010/index.html">top 100 employers</a> in 2010. One of their signature practices is allowing engineers to devote 20% of their time to projects of their choosing. <a>The program reflects Google's famous slogan, &quot;Don't be evil,&quot; and the company's positioning as an innovative leader in everything it does.</a></p> <p><b>Service Integrity</b></p> <p>The integrity of an organization is best experienced AFTER the sale. For example, we built a house a few <a>years ago and the customer service with the builder was impeccable until we closed on the property. Every request and inquiry was followed up with quick and friendly responses. However, once we closed on the property</a>, it was difficult to get phone calls answered and construction issues resolved. Following up on service quality after a customer makes a purchase is critical to maintaining and growing a customer base.</p> <p><b>Personal Integrity</b></p> <p>Business leaders should maintain honesty and integrity in every aspect of their lives. When leaders fail to live up to high ethical standards, the reputation of the organization is harmed, as well. Dennis Kozlowski, the former CEO of Tyco, and former Tyco finance chief Mark Swartz are perhaps the poster children for failed ethical leadership. In 2005, both <a target="_blank" href="http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/9399803/ns/business-corporate_scandals/">were sentenced to up to 25 years in prison</a> after stealing hundreds of millions of dollars from the company. The scandal made public its executives' poor business decisions &ndash; and profligate spending &ndash; and generated negative press for Tyco, which affected its value and profitability.</p> <p><b>Product Integrity</b></p> <p>Product integrity provides confidence to purchasers of products and services. This is where brand recognition and public perception comes into play. The homebuilder we used was one of the largest in our area, which is why we chose them<a>. When service after the sale was less than optimal, it spoke volumes to us about the product integrity of this builder</a>. Had we known what we know now before the sale, we may have negotiated differently or made sure the contract had language to support response to issues after we moved in the house.</p> <p><b>4 Ways to Incorporate Integrity into Business Practices</b></p> <p>How does an organization make integrity a key part of its everyday practices?</p> <p><a>1) </a><a href="http://humanresources.about.com/cs/strategicplanning1/a/strategicplan_4.htm">Develop a Values Statement</a> that demonstrates the values that the organization operates by. A Values statement helps employees understand the principles used in decision making.</p> <p>2) Create a <a href="http://humanresources.about.com/od/glossaryc/qt/code-of-conduct.htm">Code-of-Conduct</a> Statement. This document establishes boundaries for employee behavior.</p> <p>3) Train employees on the importance of honesty and integrity. This should be done as part of the <a href="http://thethrivingsmallbusiness.com/articles/sample-new-employee-orientation-checklist/">new employee orientation</a> process.</p> <p>4) Create confidential processes for employees to report unethical behaviors. This is important so employees are not hesitant to report questionable or inappropriate business practices.</p> <p>Business integrity should be key part of an organization&rsquo;s culture, demonstrated in every business practice. Organizations that <a>strive to do the right thing because it's the right thing to do survive and prosper. Those that don&rsquo;t, don't.</a></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/patricia-lotich">Patricia Lotich</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/small-business/why-doing-the-right-thing-is-right-for-the-bottom-line">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/250-tips-for-small-business-owners">250+ Tips for Small Business Owners</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-credit-cards-for-small-businesses">The 5 Best Credit Cards for Small Businesses</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-greatest-story-ever-sold-is-a-fantasy-covered-in-blood">The Greatest Story Ever Sold is a Fantasy Covered in Blood</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-inspiring-stories-of-normal-people-building-a-thriving-online-store">4 Inspiring Stories of Normal People Building a Thriving Online Store</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/100-ways-to-make-more-money-this-year">100+ Ways to Make More Money This Year</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Small Business Resource Center business ethics ethics integrity small business Sat, 05 Mar 2011 22:57:53 +0000 Patricia Lotich 495257 at http://www.wisebread.com Is honesty always the best policy? http://www.wisebread.com/is-honesty-always-the-best-policy <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/is-honesty-always-the-best-policy" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/728071557_958f390c5d_m.jpg" alt="Is honesty always the best policy?" title="Honesty!" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="240" height="180" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>I just got a new job! I'm really excited--by January, I should be in a position where my skills and abilities are utilized much more than they are right now. I've been biding my time, waiting for Jack Sparrow's proverbial opportune moment, and it finally came. I jumped on it, and I'm not looking back!</p> <p>However, figuring out how to handle this situation was hard. I work at a university, and the new position is in a different department at the same school. I've enjoyed working where I am, but the more time I've spent here, the more I've felt underutilized and, more and more, <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/i-hate-my-job" title="&quot;I Hate My Job&quot; Guide">unhappy</a>. So, when I got a call from a former professor asking me if I was interested in applying for a position in her department, I was excited.</p> <p>But what do I tell my boss? And my co-workers? And the people I know from work but don't work with directly? And the people I know who work in the department I'm moving to? And the people who have been waiting for a perfect position to open for me because they want me to work for them? When the process started, I felt like I walked around for a day or so, my mind buzzing with, &quot;What in the world do I say?&quot;</p> <p>In the end, I chose a particular combination of transparency and discretion. I was open with my boss--he deserved to know, and he has been honorable and trustworthy enough in our interactions that it was safe. I knew he wasn't going to fire me for applying. I told a couple of my co-workers--one who needed to know before we moved on with a project, and one who I trust to keep his mouth shut. I didn't tell everyone else in my department until I knew I would be leaving because it wasn't necessary, I didn't feel like I needed to, and it didn't seem appropriate in our corporate culture. I told my friends from the department I was moving to, including another person interested in hiring me, though that was more a function of our personal relationships (friendships outside of work) than in a work context.</p> <p>Why do I share all of this? Because it struck me today that I successfully navigated an often difficult issue, one that required disernment regarding our corporate culture, which individuals were trustworthy, and the different contexts in which I know my colleagues. Getting a new position isn't the only time these skils are necessary--they also come in handy when you're negotiating a raise, have made a big mistake, when you're having problems with a colleague, and a myriad of other situations. Here are three questions that helped me make some of these decisions.</p> <p><strong>1. How would you feel if you were in the position of the other person?</strong></p> <p>I decided not to tell my co-workers until I knew for sure about the job because I realized that I would feel awkward if they told me the same thing. I decided to tell my boss because I realized that I would want to know if I were in his position in this particular department.</p> <p><strong>2. Does your workplace have any spoken or unspoken rules about these things? </strong></p> <p>The rules, both spoken and unspoken, in my workplace are that we're pretty open about these things. To have not told anyone would have been seen and felt as sneaky or &quot;under the table&quot;.</p> <p><strong>3. What do you want to do?</strong></p> <p>Seriously, what do you want? Does it matter to you that they might see you in a certain way, or that you might lose your job, or that someone might be extra-critical of you? Do you value your ironclad integrity more than anything else that might happen? These matter, sometimes more than anything else.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Good luck with the corporate navigational skills!</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/sarah-winfrey">Sarah Winfrey</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/is-honesty-always-the-best-policy">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-new-ways-to-hack-your-boss-without-a-machete">5 Ways to Make Your Boss Love You</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-inspire-corporate-confidence">How to inspire corporate confidence</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-answer-23-of-the-most-common-interview-questions">How to Answer 23 of the Most Common Interview Questions</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-coworking-spaces-are-worth-it">4 Ways Coworking Spaces Are Worth It</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-high-paying-jobs-that-didnt-exist-10-years-ago">9 High-Paying Jobs That Didn&#039;t Exist 10 Years Ago</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Career Building corporate culture corporate transparency honesty integrity transparent Tue, 11 Sep 2007 20:12:52 +0000 Sarah Winfrey 1068 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Ways to Make Your Boss Love You http://www.wisebread.com/5-new-ways-to-hack-your-boss-without-a-machete <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-new-ways-to-hack-your-boss-without-a-machete" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/handshake-186959787.jpg" alt="handshake" title="handshake" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="141" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>When I started my first &quot;real job,&quot; I didn't realize how many situations I'd find myself in that were utterly different from most of what I'd encountered before. On top of learning the tasks specific to the job, I had to navigate office politics, figure out what it meant to be &quot;professional,&quot; and make decisions about these things on the fly with only my intuition to guide me. I made a few mistakes while I figured it out, but eventually I learned to survie, thrive, and make my boss love me. While I'm still no expert, what I offer here are solutions to common problems that have worked for me.</p> <!--break--><!--break--><p>Note: These suggestions will be particularly relevant to entry-level positions, but could be useful at other times, as well.</p> <h2>Make Your Boss&nbsp;Love You When&nbsp;You've Finished a Project<strong><br /> </strong></h2> <p>Let him know you're thinking about the future. Either ask him, &quot;So, what's next?&quot; or let him know you'll be needing some time to get things together before he approaches you with the next project. Something like, &quot;I'm getting ready for the next project. Could we talk about it in an hour/this afternoon/tomorrow/next week after I tie up some loose ends? I've been focusing on getting this done but want to make sure I haven't let anything fall through the cracks.&quot; Both approaches let him know that you're focused on what is best for the company, and the second also makes you look responsible while also taking a short break.</p> <h2>Make Your Boss&nbsp;Love You&nbsp;When&nbsp;She's Pointing Out Little Mistakes<strong><br /> </strong></h2> <p>Remember that pointing out your small mistakes is part of her job, and it may be as distasteful to her as it is to you. If the criticism is particularly difficult for you to hear, remember to breathe before you say anything. A deep breath or so, when done surrepitiously, can give you the strength to respond calmly. Then, if it's appropriate, defend yourself. If her criticism is just, nod as she speaks. Tell her, &quot;Thank you for showing me how you would prefer this to be done/how this should be done/whatever.&quot; If she persists, or is talking to you about something for the Nth time, say, &quot;This seems to be something that you want me to work on/I should work on. Are there any resources available to help me improve?&quot; Whether you need to be on time, make the webpage load faster, or something else, it's hard for a boss to fault an employee who wants to change. If she points you in a direction, follow through!</p> <h2>Make Your Boss Love You&nbsp;When&nbsp;You're Swamped and He Wants You to&nbsp;Do More<strong><br /> </strong></h2> <p>Be honest about what you can do. Most supervisors appreciate hearing when their people are overworked and stressed. If he likes up front, honest people, say, &quot;You know, I'd be happy to take that on, but realistically I won't be able to get to it until I finish with X, Y, and Z. Will that work for you?&quot; He may take it to someone else, or he may give it to you, but either way he knows what he's looking at. If he's going to lay it on you no matter what you say, try, &quot;I'll take that on. Right now, I'm working on P, D, and Q. Where does this fall in priority relative to those?&quot; With this, he knows where he stands and what you have on your plate, and he can determine when you get to it.</p> <h2>Make Your Boss Love You&nbsp;When&nbsp;You've Made a Big Mistake<strong><br /> </strong></h2> <p>If you can't fix it before she would find out, be the first to let her know. Swallow the butterflies and make your weak knees walk to her office (or write that email). Most of the time she's going to find out anyway, so you're only prolonging the agony and creating a ton of anxiety for yourself if you don't tell her. Your poise and honesty will also make an impression, even if she's upset and there are consequences. At the very least, she'll have a positive sense of your integrity for any future recommendations. And you might save your job.</p> <h2>Make Your Boss Love You When&nbsp;You're Interviewing for a New Job<strong><br /> </strong></h2> <p>In a few companies, interviewing for a new job is considered tantamount to treason. If you work for one of those companies, keep your search under the table, but don't lie if you're asked directly. You might be asked to leave, but they won't be able to fault your integrity in a recommendation. But if you work for most companies (or, at least, most of the ones I've experienced/heard about), just be honest. If you're valuable where you are, you would be surprised how many times your boss will do all she can to get you a counter-offer. If she can't or if she has some other motivation to not re-hire you, she will appreciate not being blind-sided when you turn in your notice.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/sarah-winfrey">Sarah Winfrey</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-new-ways-to-hack-your-boss-without-a-machete">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/is-honesty-always-the-best-policy">Is honesty always the best policy?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-answer-23-of-the-most-common-interview-questions">How to Answer 23 of the Most Common Interview Questions</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-dream-jobs-youre-never-too-old-to-pursue">9 Dream Jobs You&#039;re Never Too Old to Pursue</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/new-job-dont-make-these-7-mistakes-with-your-benefits">New Job? Don&#039;t Make These 7 Mistakes With Your Benefits</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-things-never-to-bring-up-in-a-job-interview">5 Things Never to Bring Up in a Job Interview</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Career Building be honest hack your boss honesty integrity machete Thu, 17 May 2007 19:04:11 +0000 Sarah Winfrey 654 at http://www.wisebread.com