Professional Integrity

10/06/2022 – Noordwijk – The Netherlands

What is professional integrity?

Professional integrity refers to the positive values and respectful behaviors that people display in professional settings. Whether you realize it or not, the people you interact with daily are watching your behaviors. Being honest, respectful and focused while taking responsibility for your actions, no matter the consequences, are key elements of professional integrity.

Having professional integrity promotes positive interactions and helps you achieve your career goals. How you present yourself in professional settings is an accurate representation of your personal values. It’s a person’s dedication to a set of moral ideals, and it is often related to characteristics such as honesty, virtue, accountability, dependability, responsibility, and loyalty.

Integrity is exemplified by strong ethical and moral ideals that are upheld in all circumstances. This core principle is critical for forming strong, trust-based professional relationships, and it is a key attribute that companies look for in potential employees during the hiring process.

How to show integrity when applying for jobs

1. Be fully committed to applying

Whether you are headhunted by a recruiter or apply directly, make sure you are 100% committed to accepting the job offer should you be successful. If you have family, then discuss everything first with them to make sure they are fully behind you BEFORE you apply. To go through an interview process knowing you are not fully committed shows disrespect to the people/company who are interviewing you.

2. Research the company

One of the most common questions in an interview is ‘What do you know about our company and why do you want to work for us?’ To not spend time to research a company shows a lack of professionalism and disrespectful to the people interviewing you.

3. Counteroffers

If you’re applying for a job with the mindset that you are looking for a counteroffer from your current employer, then this is wrong on so many levels. If you have already had a salary increase rejected and that’s the reason why you are applying for another role (to put pressure on your company) then this shows again disrespect for the people/company interviewing you and to your current employer.
Here is an interesting article with many more reasons why you should not accept a counteroffer click here

How to show integrity at work

1. Arrive on time and ready to work

It may seem like common sense to arrive on time for work, but sometimes it’s easy to get in the habit of being late. Sometimes, poor management encourages late arrivals, so keep in mind that just because your superiors might not follow the rules doesn’t mean you shouldn’t follow the rules.

2. Second, follow through with your obligations

When there are instances at work where you promise to finish a project or meet a deadline, you should plan to honour your commitments. If it helps, set frequent reminders on your phone or write the deadline in a visible spot so you don’t forget about it. And if you truly can’t follow through, let the person know and make other arrangements. This builds trust and respect among co-workers.

3. Third, be observant

Even if you’re not actively engaged in a conversation, there will be times when it’s helpful to recognize social cues or situations where you need to step in and assist someone with a task. Take time to look around and observe your surroundings.

4. Fourth, focus on your job

It’s easy to become distracted at work when there are a lot of people around, especially when they need your attention. Focus on your workload for the day and try to minimize interruptions in your work, even if that means asking someone to come back later when you have a break.

5. Fifth, become friends with honest people

People with integrity are honest and true in their actions, which means that they often clash with people who act with defiance and opposition to rules. In order to promote professional integrity at work, consider keeping your interactions with dishonest people to a minimum and spend the majority of your time with people who hold similar values.

6. Sixth, assume responsibility

Sometimes work conflicts arise, and you may be part of an issue that needs attention. In this case, accept your role with dignity and confidence, even if it means receiving a negative consequence. Most people respond well to heartfelt apologies and forgive any wrongdoings. You can go one step further by keeping your word in the future or demonstrating your remorse with a kind deed.

7. Finally, respect others

When people respect one another, the opportunity for conflict decreases. Businesses who show respect for their employees naturally show respect for their customers as well and tend to excel in other areas of business. Treat your co-workers and others around you with respect and you’ll find that the work environment becomes a happy place.

This article was written by Ian Stammers, Head of RPO Services and Workforce Solutions