By definition, acting with integrity means to follow one’s morals or ethical convictions under all circumstances. My parents made this value very clear to me during my youth as they taught me to do the right thing, even if nobody was looking. Although this is a simple concept, it should not be confused with being easy. When choosing to do the “right thing” many times it may not be the easier option. The choices we make concerning acting with integrity define us as individuals and collectively as an enterprise. This operating principle is vital in all areas of our business and critical to meeting our most important objective of not hurting our people.
There are many ways to create a culture wherein acting with integrity is the standard, especially when it comes to working safely. A leader should lead by example, create an environment where people can come forward with concerns as well as identify at-risk behaviors and correct them. These are all things we can do once we have the employee on our team. However, creating this environment starts long before they join us as an employee. When evaluating potential employees, I would encourage leaders to conduct values-based interviews in conjunction with skill-based interviews. Asking probing questions about prior situations where a candidate may able to reference “doing the right thing” or handling a situation where they may have observed someone working unsafely can be a great tool in determining what they value.
An exciting trend we are seeing in our human resources team involves requests for additional training regarding values-based interviewing. This is a great example to illustrate that our field leaders embrace and understand the importance of our operating principles!