Aug. 21, 2020, 10:59 a.m. by Dr Gayatri Mohapatra ( 621 views)
Honesty is the key principle to build and develop the work culture and effective team building. Honesty and integrity are the foundations of leadership, as this week's story tells us.
Honesty is when you speak the truth and act truthfully. Honesty may be seen as a willingness to communicate thoughts &feelings even when it is uncomfortable and also open to listening to ideas & discussions. For most people, honesty is the same as sincerity, truthfulness, integrity, frankness, candor, and openness. Honesty includes not only telling the truth but also leaving the right impression
As Albert Einstein said, “Whoever is careless with the truth in small matters cannot be trusted with important matters."
Leaders need to be courageous, but they also need to be open to the idea that they could be wrong.
Tony Simons, professor at Cornell University and author of The Integrity Divide, states, "Organisations where employees strongly believed their managers followed through on promises and commitments and demonstrated the values they preached were substantially more profitable than those whose managers scored average or lower."
The “Trust Barometer 2020” report was conducted by the communications firm Edelman, which has been running the survey for the past 20 years. The Barometer, which aims to survey trust and credibility around the world, is usually released at the start of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, which began on Tuesday. The 2020 barometer surveyed over 34,000 people in 28 countries.
The 2020 Edelman Trust Barometer reveals that despite a strong global economy and near full employment, none of the four societal institutions that the study measures—government, business, NGOs, and media—is trusted.
The cause of this paradox can be found in people’s fears about the future and their role in it, which are a wake-up call for our institutions to embrace a new way of effectively building trust: balancing competence with ethical behavior.
Being honest is a constructive course of action in establishing and building not only the organisation but also the culture within.
Jack Welch calls it “candor.” He believes that if you are afraid of candor, then you don’t have the guts to be an effective leader. You are going to surround yourself with yes people who will say what you want to hear instead of saying the truth.
The book "Winners never cheat" by Jon Huntsman, is filled with stories taken from his own experience in which he steadfastly refused to compromise his principles.
"There are no moral shortcuts in the game of business or life,” he writes. “There are, basically, three kinds of people, the unsuccessful, the temporarily successful, and those who become and remain successful. The difference is character.”
History is filled with iconic & transformational leaders who were honest to both themselves & their followers.
Truth” Gandhi once said, “Is not merely a matter of words. It is really a matter of living the truth-“
This trust did not come about in an hour or a year. It took years of relentless integrity before Gandhi was trusted completely by his people and finally the world. He won this trust not only by his complete honesty in thought and action but also by his unique frankness. He bared his private life to his people. He described his struggle with temptation. He told of his failures and when he failed again he began over again, refusing to be discouraged.
Just like Gandhiji, honest leaders like Martin Luther King & Sir Abraham Lincoln have always been admired by people for their honesty & integrity.
Martin Luther King Jr dared to face the risks and pursued non-violence. He did not show reluctance or even wavered when threats were thrown his way. Through his speeches, he told his followers the reality of the situation no matter how painful it may seem.
Abraham Lincoln was open to criticism and debate. He empowered his leadership through dialogue with the American society of the time and used the opinion of others to self-correct mistakes and improve his public image. One of Lincoln's greatest leadership traits was his sense of integrity and his strong belief in his principles.
In the words of Thomas Jefferson" honesty is the first chapter in the book of wisdom".