A moment of inspiration

June 1, 1998
Image is how others see you, and it may not be the real you. Integrity is being true to yourself. To be truthful with others (honesty), you must be true to yourself.

Dick Biggs

Image is how others see you, and it may not be the real you. Integrity is being true to yourself. To be truthful with others (honesty), you must be true to yourself.

Years ago I was conducting a seminar on business ethics in Dallas. A young man flew in from a small town in Arkansas to attend this session. He`d just been promoted from salesman to sales manager. He sat on the front row, took copious notes, asked questions and couldn`t say enough about the importance of ethics in business.

When it was time to catch a cab to the airport, this man asked if we could share a ride and talk more about the day`s topic. I agreed. He talked incessantly about the value of my seminar until we arrived at his terminal.

The fare was $40. We each paid $20, but the young sales manager asked the cab driver for a $40 receipt. Pocketing the inflated receipt, he winked and boasted, "I learned that trick from my general manager!"

Reflecting upon that incident, these questions came to mind: What other "tricks" had his general manager taught him? Would he be teaching these "tricks" to his new sales people? Had he heard anything I`d said?

Prior to that revealing moment, my image of this young man was one of integrity. I felt like I`d had a positive impact on him. However, my image changed dramatically when he failed to be true to himself.

The word inteGRITy also includes another word:

- Grit...a "firmness of mind...unyielding courage" that leads to...

- Respect..."a high or special regard" by others that fosters...

- Influence...which "produces an effect without force" based on...

- Truth...or "that which agrees with final reality."

Perhaps that`s what St. Augustine meant when he said: "When regard for the truth has broken down or even slightly weakened, all things remain doubtful."

Dick Biggs is president of Biggs Optimal Living Dynamics. An inspirational speaker, he is the author of If Life is a Balancing Act, Why l am I so Darn Clumsy? For more information about Mr. Biggs, call (770) 886-3035.

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