Linkedin put out a great series this week in which they had leaders, in various industries, explain the best advice they have received during their career (Click HERE to read more about it). After giving it a lot of thought, I decided to give some advice of my own.
Advice: Integrity must be put before anything else. This is easier said than done, and I can admit I have stumbled with this a few times in my life (I will not be going into detail on where this has happened). This is an ongoing lesson for me, and I am motivated to accomplish this by the name I want left behind when I leave this wonderful green earth.
In business, it is so important you own up to the mistakes you make. As hard as it is to own your mistakes, it will pay dividends in the future when needed. As a staffing/sales professional it is very easy to overlook details in a candidate that will come back to hurt you later in the hiring life cycle. It is also very easy to put this blame elsewhere, but I think it takes a true professional to look into the mirror and realize he/she could have done a better job. This same principal can be applied to any job in any industry. When you make a mistake, OWN UP TO IT! Don't try to pass the blame to another person, or try to make excuses for why it happened. I have found the best response is this; "I did make that mistake, I have learned from it, and I know what I need to do in the future not to make this same mistake." This was a hard lesson for me to learn in staffing because I never really had a mentor I could rely on. I believe in the staffing industry the word INTEGRITY is put on the back burner, and it is up to the employee to make sure this is a core value that is used in his/her everyday business.
Within your family, integrity is something that can hold a family together or tear the family apart. Owning a mistake as a parents is something that has been very hard for me to do, and I can only imagine how much harder it will be as my kids continue to grow. I don't have a lot of good advice on how to do this, but I can say that if you build an environment with open communication it will be easier for everyone to hold each other accountable for mistakes that have been made.
If you are able to live with integrity in business and in life, I can assure you that you are well on your way to leaving a good lasting legacy. Leaving this good legacy will in fact make you live forever in the hearts of all those you have impressed upon through your journey!