Sunday with Eden | Apr 22,2023
Oct 24 , 2020
By Ristu Fekadu
To compromise between the lines is a day-to-day practice. However, "oneness," that unity of thought that comes rarely, is a character trait built through lots of effort and time. What we say and do implies how we are committed to it.
Critical to such a state of being, in our professional and personal lives, in politics, business or in social settings, is integrity. Being honest, trustworthy and reliable are unmatched character traits that not only improve our likelihood of success but make teamwork and healthy competition possible. It is an advantage that has long been frowned upon by the business elite that grew out of the concept of selfish endeavour as a "winning" tactic.
At some point, people may not like the decision we make, but it is critical we are backed by their trust, especially while it is within our circle of influence. It is like a safety deposit in others’ hearts and minds. It is how we buy the benefit of the doubt – the knowledge and belief that our actions, in the end, do stem from an honest place. This is an indispensable advantage to have in building teams.
Unfortunately, the politics and business realms seem less interested in such things. To have ulterior motives have become acceptable and the concept of good faith has come to inspire laughter.
Is this the right way to go? Is there a difference between erring without meaning to and approaching an assignment with questionable intent? Is it possible to deal constructively with people in the latter bucket or create a cohesive team with them as a member?
In business, delivering what has been promised is vital. But character is a traceable set of behaviours. At the end, when it comes to people whose integrity is questionable, success in one assignment is rarely a guarantee that the same will occur moving forward. In the same token, in dealing with people that may have failed at one task, it builds faith in their character that we feel comfortable enough assigning them another task even if they have failed the first one. Their integrity makes them a reliable partner to push through with another project. In business, where consistency is vital, such confidence in team members integrity is highly critical.
Further complicating the matter is that integrity is not a trait that pops up at any time in a person’s lifetime. It is discipline shaped from an early age. This is why our education systems may be bringing up students that turn out to be unreliable team members. They predicate learning upon things such as grades - not something to be chased for its own but critical for the attainment of a passing grade.
Integrity is thus commoditised, worth only demonstrating in words. To have a firm adherence to a moral code, unharnessed persistently, becomes hard. Politics and business become less about the ideologies and improved customer service that translates in profits, respectively, and more about who could step on who to get ahead. This is unhealthy, not just for individuals but politics and business as well.
I am not quite sure how many of us could stand out if we are evaluated with this respect by our co-workers, supervisors or subordinates. Most of us belong to a certain culture, and our conformity often signifies whether or not we manage to stay in the institutions. Societal, political and organisational cultures have intoxicating effects that make having integrity an all but fraught venture.
The business and political environments require serious considerations here. After all, we reap what we sow. If the value of integrity is respected in all but name, it is naïve to expect it from even a few individuals.
The importance of healthy competition and cooperation supportive to the greater good needs to be emphasised. Integrity has a cumulative effect while also needing the establishing of a culture to ensure that it remains relevant. While easy to ignore, a lack of integrity exacts a heavy cost in how we cooperate as a society.
PUBLISHED ON Oct 24,2020 [ VOL 21 , NO 1069]
Sunday with Eden | Apr 22,2023
Viewpoints | Apr 26,2019
Viewpoints | Jul 03,2021
Fortune News | Feb 13,2021
Life Matters | Jan 23,2021
Viewpoints | May 04,2019
Life Matters | Apr 15,2023
Featured | Nov 02,2019
Radar | Dec 05,2020
Commentaries | Aug 22,2020
Photo Gallery | 82740 Views | May 06,2019
Photo Gallery | 74882 Views | Apr 26,2019
Fineline | 58534 Views | Oct 03,2020
Fortune News | 58326 Views | Jul 18,2020
Commentaries | Dec 02,2023
Life Matters |
My Opinion | Dec 02,2023
Sunday with Eden | Dec 02,2023
Agenda | Dec 02,2023
Editorial | Dec 02,2023
Dec 24 , 2022
Biniam Mikru heads the department of cabinet affairs under Mayor Adanech Abiebie. But...
Jul 2 , 2022 . By RUTH TAYE
On a rainy afternoon last week, a coffee processing facility in the capital's Akaki-Qality District was abuzz with activ...
Nov 27 , 2021
Against my will, I have witnessed the most terrible defeat of reason and the most sa...
Nov 13 , 2021
Plans and reality do not always gel. They rarely do in a fast-moving world. Every act...
Leaders of the National Election Board are in a charm offensive mood, of a sort. Last week, they organised a rare tour for members of the me...
When the country's most senior diplomats and envoys return back to their posts after two-week debriefings, they leave behind a point or two...
Dec 2 , 2023
The symphony of traffic noise in Addis Abeba is not just a sign of life, but a siren...
Nov 25 , 2023
Ethiopia's quest to develop a functioning capital market is a demanding yet not unach...
Nov 18 , 2023
Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed (PhD) has made a fervent call for landlocked Ethiopia to ga...
Nov 11 , 2023
In November last year, a ray of hope pierced the gloomy skies of Ethiopia as the Pret...
I have a love-hate relationship with my phone. It is my go to source for information. I enjoy interacting with text messages and browsing t...
Over the weekend, I attended a wedding where my husband was one of the protocols. Despite the typical joy...
Dec 2 , 2023 . By MUNIR SHEMSU
Mamo Mihretu, the governor of the National Bank of Ethiopia (NBE), has outlined a com...
Dec 2 , 2023 . By AKSAH ITALO
BGI Ethiopia, one of the largest brewing companies, is in the throes of a major trans...
Minister of Agriculture, Girma Amentie (PhD), is leading a charge to overhaul the fer...
Dec 2 , 2023 . By AKSAH ITALO
Amidst accession to a cross-regional trade, one of the oldest industries is strugglin...
Or see contact page