I have just finished watching the James Bond 007 film “Quantum of Solace” again. It’s an odd film from which to learn a lesson about integrity – you might think. However, there is one line in the movie that seems a bit out of place.
In a conversation between Bond and “M”, “M” states
“You can’t put a price on integrity.”
It seemed a strange thing to hear in the middle of a “shoot-em up” revenge movie where spying, lying and denying are the order of the day. Perhaps, Bond and M believe that integrity is linked to the priorities of the day, and as these change for depending on the job in hand, then integrity will also change.
Your view and my view of integrity will differ. It could be that the integrity of an individual will run in parallel with that individual’s values and priorities.
So how do you or I live with integrity? It’s difficult to define but let me give you my take on it.
Here is my definition of integrity:
- consistency of actions, words, thoughts
- it must flow into every area of my life: family, work, social, business – and there cannot be one sort of integrity for work and another for home – they must be consistent
- it must flow continually; it is not meant to be turned on or off when I choose or when it suits
In addition, it’s not about show, or how you act or perform. It’s not shallow. It’s much deeper than that. It ultimately about character. I believe that these two things go hand in hand; no character – no integrity; strong character – a life of integrity.
You can’t live a fulfilled life without both working hand in hand together. And if you are a leader they are essential.
Have your say: Do you have a different definition of “integrity”?
John Maxwell has a page of quotes on integrity. Check them out here.
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