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Lead With Integrity: A Challenge to Do the Right Thing (July/Aug 2017)

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Ethics Matters

July-August 2017

In July of 2016, I found myself in the middle of an ethical dilemma. I was traveling across the country speaking to audiences about ethical leadership, and encouraging them to make decisions based on what they believed were doing the right things. I was also trying to be an example for those audiences, which ranged from college students to c-suite individuals. However, I realized in one area of my life, I was not being a good example at all. I was not doing the right thing. The area was my personal health and fitness. You may be thinking, “What does that have to do with being an ethical leader?” Well, I was depriving myself, my family, coworkers and business stakeholders from getting the best me. I was not doing the right thing when it came to making decisions about what I ate and my level of exercise. I often spoke of performance, image and exposure to audiences, but my image did not support the message I was sharing. Talking about health as a leader, but not being about it, got old to me. I decided being a true ethical leader included being an example in every way. I am amazed at how beneficial this holistic, ethical leadership mindset is for me. I have seen a dramatic increase in my energy level, perhaps because I lost 34 pounds. I can get more done in the amount of time that I am working, but most importantly, I have been able to be an example and encourage others around me. My wife, several of my friends and some of my coworkers have joined me in the worthwhile quest to do the right things with our health. Others following along equates to leadership, right? Ethical leadership is a holistic job. We must improve as a total person, including our health, to be the best leader we can be. I hope this note encourages you to look at every aspect of your leadership, and challenge yourself to do the right thing. Remember, lead with integrity.


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