Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Learn Some Integrity from "Sully"

A couple weeks ago, Chesley "Sully" Sullenberger was the heroic pilot of US Air's Flight 1549 that ended up miraculously safely ditching his plane in the Hudson River - with no casualties. Instantly "Sully" became a national hero.

We see stories like this all the time, but to much dismay, we soon find out that our hero's Integrity is only paper thin. It was more that he was in the right place at the right time, than anything else. But not the case with Chesley Sullenberger. From everything I can tell, he's the real deal - he not only talks the talk, but he also walks the walk.

Yesterday morning, while driving to visit with a client, I was taken aback by a story (discussed on the Glenn Beck Radio Show) that brings out the depth of Sully's Integrity. While Tom Daschle, Secretary of Health and Human Services, is being accused of failing to pay taxes owed, and Michael Phelps is making headlines about smoking "who knows what", "Sully" is calling the library in his hometown to tell them that he will not be able to return the book that he has out.

As it turns out, the book that he checked out a couple weeks ago, is now at the bottom of the Hudson River. That's right, "Sully" believes so much in what Intergrity, that he is calling his local library to apologize for the book that was lost when he was saving the lives of the people on board Flight 1549, and he wanted to let them know so he could take care of any penalty.

Can you see the difference between these men? Can you see that Integrity stands for something in today's society? I don't kow about you, but regardless of the position, I would rather have "Sully" on my team, than either of these other two individuals. Skills can be taught. Knowledge can be transferred. But teaching someone motiviation and / or integrity is near impossible.

So when you are looking for new employees, stop and ask yourself, "Do you want employees that know the right thing to do or employees that will do the right thing?"

Oh by the way, the book "Sully" checked out and ended up at the bottom of the Hudson River was Practical Ethics, by Peter Singer.

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