Is my integrity same as yours

January 9, 2012 at 10:30 am | Posted in Blogroll, Out of my mind | 1 Comment

These days we often hear and talk of integrity. More the attention more is the questioning and doubts. Dictionary defines “integrity” in two ways; as “The quality of being honest and having strong moral principles; moral uprightness” and as “The state of being whole and undivided”. We are told that “integrity” is not same as “morality”, which makes sense. So let us explore integrity as being whole and undivided.

The question that often bothers me is what integrity is in case of say crooks. Similar to the famous Amitabh Bachchan dialog in the film Namak Halal, the crooks would say “I talk crookedness, I walk crookedness…” Born crooks live crookedness in all walks of their life. They have complete internal integrity. How about external? They successfully pretend to be honest and dependable, because without it they can’t con others. Here again their external behavior is completely aligned and whole with their internal crookedness. So they are complete and whole; true epitomes of integrity 🙂

Remember the fable of the Scorpion and the Frog? Given a chance, a scorpion will always sting because it is its nature. A frog would be a fool to assume otherwise. Only in movies and serials, the good trumps over the evil in the end; real life is different.

Is that bad? Not necessarily. From a systems perspective, any system needs all shades of diversity to remain whole and maintain its integrity. Too much homogeneity and it would be doomed to extinction. Diversity helps the creative tension, which is essential for change and growth. Civilizations need both peace and wars.

Closer home the software teams need the diversity, especially the self-organizing agile teams. Rapid and apt response to change needs a wide range of skills and attitudes. This in turn needs the culture of tolerance for the opposites. It is not easy, but certainly worth cultivating.

Your views and inputs are valuable; please share.


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  1. In a team work, sharing the knowledge, new learnings and thoughts openly (without borders, prejudice and the perceived cost of lost identity) demonstrate another facet of Integrity.

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