Today’s post is about a topic that most people, even highly educated and successful people, often know very little about or pay little attention to. It is about how personal financial habits have far-reaching implications on the quality of your life and the amount of career satisfaction you will experience, no matter where you are on your journey. This post is not about necessarily elevating one method over any others, but just about the value of financial integrity in general, how it has benefited The Ghannad Group personally and professionally, and how it can do the same for you. And fair warning: this is going to be a long one.
It is apparent to me that leaders are often looking for that new process or procedure or tool guaranteed to create engagement and improve their results. My experience has been that, while access to the latest technology often acts as an effective catalyst, the fundamental attitudes and behaviors that make or break a team are timeless and universal. While their particular manifestations can and should change depending on each unique situation, the fundamental beliefs that undergird them invariably cultivate the sense of personal accountability that directly impacts the results that the team produces, no matter when and where they are implemented.
What do you think about when you hear about someone who has spent the better part of the past 25 years of their life abusing hard drugs and going in and out of prison? Would you be surprised if I told you that I recently met a bunch of people who fit this description, and that I could not have been more impressed with their strength of character, integrity, commitment, and leadership? Would you believe me if I said that they constitute an ideal model of how business culture should function in the world? Well, it’s true!
I would argue that, more than any other virtue, rock solid integrity is the one that makes the greatest difference in how much influence a person has and how much they are able to accomplish. For one thing, people are more likely to want to follow and support a leader whose actions are consistent with their words. More importantly, our own ability to count on ourselves to follow through with promises we’ve made—to ourselves and to others—has the profoundest effect on the size of the challenges we are willing to take on in life. Consequently, whether or not we know and relate to ourselves as persons of integrity determines whether or not our endeavors throughout life will end in success or failure. If you know that you are the kind of person who consistently meets the commitments they make, then you tend to play a bigger game in life and declare and pursue and achieve extraordinary things, and if you know that you aren’t that kind of person, you end up not making big promises and settling for an unexceptional life.
If you are familiar with my writing on leadership, you know that I put a great deal of emphasis on the mindset and behavior of leaders as the key elements in creating a High Commitment Culture. There is, however, one other even more foundational factor, without which it is impossible for any leader to effectively lead, no matter how enlightened or empowering they may be. That one foundational element, upon which all else rests, is precisely this: the leader’s own physical health and fitness.