“Integrity is not hard-wired into your DNA.”- Warren Buffet
Integrity is everything; without it in some measure, life becomes difficult. In recent years organizations have begun choosing solid character traits above skillsets, of course, I’m referring to qualified applicants. It takes integrity to develop good character.
Why is Character so important?
Character rests on our beliefs held in the heart. If we don’t believe we should help others – we won’t. If placing ourselves first at all cost is something we believe in, we will behave that way, and lack integrity with others. We truly connect with others at a heart level, not at the personality level. The major cause of corporate scandals is character failure.
“As a leader, if you keep building on personality, gifts, and talents, instead of good character to lead your people, you will always end up being manipulative.” – JSP
I’m sure we’ve all met people who we liked, and at the same time, we had an inner warning to be careful around them, this happens when there’s no connection on a deeper level. The law of connection states, “Leaders will touch a heart before they ask for a hand.” Making a heart connection takes good character resting on good values.
Character is important because it defines us; it’s who we are. Moral qualities such as honesty, loyalty, self-discipline, and perseverance, influence how we think feel and behave. Growth in good character is called maturity.
We all know that maturity takes time. We must take time getting to know someone. In the long run, our character (good or bad) begins to emerge, and we become known for who we are.
Develop Good Character
Warren Buffett understands the value of character, which is precisely the reason he looks for people of Integrity with traits such as honesty, virtue, and morality. Buffett believes character will “make or break you in the professional world.”
Writer Krista Brubaker asks companies to consider two simple questions,
- “What feeling do people get when they think about your company?”
- “Does your brand and culture exude a strong character, built on the individual character of employees dedicated to bettering the world around them?”
People are known by the friends they keep; it stands to reason that Companies become known for the employees they keep. Consider the following traits when hiring or before submitting your own résumé.
“Whoever is careless with the truth in small matters cannot be trusted with important matters” – Albert Einstein
Here are 7 traits that can make you attractive to any organization, if you’re accepting résumés these traits should be attractive to you.
- Good Character
In his book “Developing the Leader Within You 2.0,” John Maxwell says, “all leadership is rooted in the leader’s character. Character is the combination of a person’s values, beliefs, and actions. Simply put, character is walking the walk and talking the talk.” Character is everything in life; if people can trust you, they’ll work with you.
Danny Boice writes, “Most recruiters assess candidates based on skills, credentials, and accomplishments” “…there’s something to be said for considering another trait that’s more difficult to measure during the hiring process: character. Character can speak volumes to someone’s integrity. If you can’t trust an employee to do the right thing on a daily basis, you open yourself up to a lot of risks.”
Boice lists 4 ways to do a character check:
- Go Beyond the Standard Questions
- Grill Their References
- Poke Around Social Media
- Conduct a Background Check (1)
- Being a people person
Highly successful people communicate clearly and relate well to others. Life is about people, and how well we relate to each other determines how successful we become. Learning how you want to be treated and treating others in that manner increases your influence and effectiveness as a leader.
The Golden Rule as timeless as it is priceless; “if you want to be golden, follow the rule.” Therefore, treat people the same way you want them to treat you. Begin putting others first, and you’ll have no shortage of people wanting to work with you.
- Taking Initiative
Successful people are proactive, not reactive; they never consider taking risks a gamble; it’s part of the discovery process. Successful people can adjust to changes because they’re always open to new ideas and ways of doing things. When you’re an initiator, you make things happen instead of waiting for someone to do something. Leaders who take the initiative are inspiring and motivating.
- Creative Thinking
Successful people do not see problems; they see opportunities. They think outside the box not always following the traditional methodology. It’s those who think outside the box that comes up with the most solutions to solve problems.
- Being a Self-starter
Self-starters tend to be strategic thinkers, from planning to goal-setting their achievements are the direct result of their sustained focus and consistency. Self-starters have the discipline to hold themselves accountable. If you cannot trust yourself, who can you trust?
- Being Inquisitive
Highly successful people seem to maintain their childlike inquisitiveness. Inquisitive people never seem to tire of learning. An inquisitive person can be very resourceful; their outside the box mindset lends itself to being open to new ideas from any source. Inquisitive leaders have staying power because their creative thinking is both contagious and challenging.
Good leaders do good work and produce the results organizations are seeking. Competent leaders intentionally grow themselves; being average is unacceptable so, always exceeding expectations enables them to maintain a high level of competency.
Competent leaders get better at making the difficult decisions, they learn from their mistakes and pass on what they learn to those around them thus, adding value to them and increasing their likelihood of reaching their potential.
(1) 4 Ways to Assess Character During the Hiring Process by Danny Boice