On Leadership: Integrity

I have been rereading Stephen M.R. Covey’s wonderful book, The Speed of Trust, and felt the share a story he used to teach integrity.  Dr. Covey defines integrity when there is no gap between intent and behavior.  He calls this congruence.

Dr. Covey illustrates this principle with a story about Mahatma Gandhi.  “At one point in his life, [Gandhi] was invited to speak before the House of Commons in England.  Using no notes, he spoke for two hours and brought an essentially hostile audience to a rousing standing ovation.  Following his speech, some reporters approached his secretary, Mahadev Desai, incredulous that Gandhi could mesmerize his audience for such a long time with no notes. Desai responded:

‘What Gandhi thinks, what he feels, what he says, and what he does are all the same.  He does not need notes…You and I, we think one thing, feel another, say a third, and do a fourth, so we need notes and files to keep track.’

Gandhi was not only congruent within himself, he was also congruent with the principles he stood for.”

There are many other great lessons in Dr. Covey’s book.  I highly recommend it.  You can purchase is on Amazon.com by clicking the link below or listen to it from Audible.com.

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