“Lack of integrity can undermine almost any other effort to create high trust accounts. People can seek to understand, remember little things, keep their promises, clarify and fulfill expectations, and still fail to build reserves of trust if they are inwardly duplicitous.Integrity includes but goes beyond honesty. Honesty is telling the truth–in other words, confirming our words to reality. Integrity is confirming reality to our words–in other words, keeping and fulfilling expectations. This requires an integrated character, a oneness, primarily with self but also with life.
One of the most important ways to manifest integrity is to be loyal to those who are not present. In doing so, we build the trust of those who are present. When you defend those who are absent, you retain the trust of those present.
Suppose you and I were talking alone, and we were criticizing our supervisor in a way that we would not dare do if he were present. Now what will happen when you and I have a falling out? You know I’m going to be discussing your weaknesses with someone else. That’s what you and I did behind our supervisor’s back. You know my nature. I’ll sweet-talk you to your face and bad-mouth you behind your back. You’ve seen me do it.
That’s the essence of duplicity.”