Monthly Archives: February 2017


This may be one of the toughest words on this list of “99 Words for Leaders to Live By.”


Generally speaking we want people to be honest with us — even if it hurts.


Being completely honest all of the time is very difficult to do.

So where are the lines drawn?

What about “little white lies.”


Am I being honest if I tell only part of the truth and hold back some information for “the betterment of all concerned?”


Am I being honest if I tell the truth, but in such a way that the listener believes I am not telling the truth? Or they can’t discern whether I am telling the truth or not?


There are likely many situations we can come up with where “honesty” as the best policy can be very difficult.

Perhaps Shakespeare adds a bit to the understanding of this discussion:

“This above all: to thine own self be true,
And it must follow, as the night the day,
Thou canst not then be false to any man.”

Making choices about truthfulness must come from the depths of who you truly are — and yes, they do come from your “Integrity.” If the choice you make comes from your best intentions, without guile or subterfuge, and without personal gain holding sway; then you have likely done the best you can under a given circumstance.

Weighing honesty is something we do every day; perhaps, quite a few times a day — your best choices come from your best YOU.

“Farewell: My blessing season this in thee!.”

Joe Koob


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I wrote several “Business-related” books a few years ago centered around “Managing Change.” One of these is particularly close to my heart: “Honoring Work and Life: 99 Words for Leaders to Live By.

I have decided, since there is so much distrust in politics today (and in business as well), to discuss, at the rate of about one per week, these 99 words — to weigh these and my thoughts about them against what is happening today. It is a sad, sad statement that our leaders (whatever side of the aisle you may look to) have lost their way in regards to almost all of these.


I don’t know about you, but this, I truly believe, does belong at the head of the list. One thing we have within ourselves that defines who we are more than anything else is our integrity — our honor. AND there are no two ways around whether we have it or not.

How do you see yourself? Can you look in the mirror and truly say — I AM the person I want to be. I place my honor at the forefront of my choices, my actions, my beliefs? And though I sometimes make mistakes; or perhaps make the wrong decision when I am weighing many factors in a difficult situation, overall I can say that INTEGRITY is one of the foundations of who I am.

Yes, we all do make some choices that later seem to feel wrong, or not as wise or honorable as we would like, but what characterizes a person with real integrity is how they feel about those dicey choices they may have made in the past… as well as that they strive to make better choices as a result. They learn from their choices, don’t repeat the past, and make amends when they can.

Do you feel, as I do, that far too many people — especially those we should be able to look up to for guidance and truth — seem to have completely lost their connection to the center of who they are/should be. Integrity and honor just don’t seem to matter any more. Actions speak for who they are; not their grandiose words of “leadership.”

Integrity sets the foundation — if its not there; then we need to let the world know that it is what we value.


Joe Koob





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Talk with your actions — always.

Today, starting now, we all should live our lives by living what we believe in our hearts.


The Golden Rule suggests that we should act as if we are are interacting with ourselves. We should be the person we think other people should be to us.

Do you want people to treat you badly, lie, cheat, steal, be dis-honorable, do poor work, yell at you, blame you, charge you more than they should, treat you as “less than,” offer excuses all the time, do poor quality work, stomp on your beliefs, take your freedom,… ? This could be a really long list and you could add to it, because you know exactly what I mean — you’ve been treated badly, likely recently.

Or would you rather put the REAL YOU out there, as you would like others to do, too?

We make these types of choices many times a day. Somewhere within everyone I believe there is a sense of what is right and honorable and what is not. Some people have REALLY lost their way, in this regard, it seems;  but I do believe they once knew where that place was within their hearts. Somewhere along the way they made choices that caused them to lose that truth, that honor, that understanding.

I don’t think most of us have; though — I think we forget to honor it and we find excuses not to honor it.

Is money, or power, or things, or one-up-manship… is ANYTHING really worth losing that truth?

LIVE YOUR TRUTH again. Start now and don’t lose sight of it, ever. Because… this IS your life and every day speaks to who you are and where you are going with it. Honor who you are at heart.

THAT is how we will change the world.

Now get out there and hug someone; just because somewhere deep inside I bet you would really like a hug.


Joe Koob


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