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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