competing with integrity

Many leaders are recognized for their charisma. Seldom are leaders really respected because of their charisma. Being charismatic is not a sin but it is not the most important aspect of one’s life. Some charismatic leaders intimidate their followers. Fear is no catalyst for trust. Some charismatic leaders coerce and manipulate. Followers hate to be played.

One of the most important elements of a leader’s life is his integrity.

It is common to see compromise in areas of integrity. Apparently a few believe that there are more important characteristics. Three examples of things that I have recently seen competing with and defeating integrity in one particular leader’s life are: control, maintaining position/title and perpetuating their system.

Some leaders place these kinds of things above their integrity in the hopes that followers won’t know or care. The trouble is, once followers discover the truth (and sooner or later they do), they withhold respect and trust and therefore they will not follow. The system that the leader hoped to perpetuate and the position/title they hoped to maintain and the control they desired to retain end up lost. Once trust and respect is lost, it is not easily regained.

It takes a lifetime to build trust but only a moment to lose it.

The less integrity a leader has, the more he/she tries to cover their compromise. The deception thickens, the mistrust multiplies. And we experience meltdown.

There is no substitute for integrity. Nothing can replace it in the life of a leader. Nothing can compete.

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