On a scale of 1–5, with 5 being greatest, how would you rate yourself on integrity? What about when you are off the clock or when you believe no one is looking, then how would you rate yourself? Are you true to your values in every situation?

I have been thinking about this word for awhile and most recently, as my almost–college–grad daughter goes to her first overnight interview. I cautioned her about making smart choices “after” the formal session was over as I was sure that her prospective employer would be watching even more closely than during the formal sessions.

Integrity. According to Webster, it means “completeness, wholeness” and an “unimpaired condition.” But how many of us are really different people when we are putting on the face of the company versus when we are behind closed doors? Or when we want something versus when someone needs or wants our help?

Integrity. There is a cliché that defines integrity as, “What you do or how you act when you think no one is watching.” It’s easy to have integrity in a room full of people – we always want others to think the best of us. It’s much harder come from a place of integrity when we think it doesn’t matter.


The last five strategies, according to Henry Cloud’s “Nine Things You Simply Must Do,” include …

5. Act Like an Ant. One step at a time, bit by bit, continuously moving towards your goals. I was reading a book this weekend that talked about the great cathedrals of Europe. Most were not built in the lifetime of the original builders … but they were finished and they are magnificent and they are a constant inspiration to generations. One step at a time.

6. Hate Well. Hate things, not people … and act to stop the things you hate from taking over your life and paralyzing you. I can think of a couple … jealousy, bitterness, a lack of discipline, feelings of inadequacy or incompetency, injustice. Be a change–agent.

7. Don’t Play Fair. Rise above the world’s standard of “an eye for an eye” and treat everyone the way you want to be treated … no matter what, give back more than you were given.

8. Be Humble. Recognize that you don’t know everything and commit to taking responsibility for learning from mistakes and new situations. Lifelong learners with a thirst for knowledge are valuable assets in today’s competitive job market.

9. Upset the Right People. Honor your values and principles in guiding your actions. Doing what is right, even in the face of upsetting the apple cart, is the hard thing. Doing the hard thing is what successful people do.

(Christian Counseling Today, 2004 Vol. 12, #3)


A great article in a recent “Christian Counseling Today” magazine (2004 Vol. 12, No. 3) gave an overview about a book by Henry Cloud entitled “Nine Things You Simply Must Do, “if you want to succeed in love and life. I’ll list the first four below and follow up with the last five next week. If you can’t wait – get the book!

1. Dig it Up. Successful people realize that success comes from inside and works its way to the outside world. They dig up their dreams, passions, and motivations from deep in their hearts. You can always identify people who are passionate about what they do.

2. Pull the Tooth. Get rid of the negative energy in your life that is keeping you from being successful. It’s not easy, but it is necessary.

3. Play the Movie. Each day, every moment and every choice is part of a bigger picture. Choices are made based on reaching the bigger goal. If your long–term goals are not written down, they are simply dreams you wish would come true.

4. Do Something. Take responsibility, make a decision, and move forward. Be a change agent. Make things happen!

<>< <>< <>< <>< <>< <>< <>< <><

If you have a burning question you’d like answered in a future column, email me at

<>< <>< <>< <>< <>< <>< <>< <><


Jim Rohn says, “you are the average of the five people you hang around the most.” Along the same lines, Robert Allen says that, “your income is the average of the five people you hang around the most.”

––So, how would you describe the five people in your smallest center of influence?

––How are you most like them?

––How are you different and unique?

––Are they supporting you in achieving your goals or holding you back?

–Do you need to be cultivating more of the people you want to be like into your sphere of influence?

––If so, when will you begin?


When you hear someone say, “you need to be networking as part of your job search,” how do you respond?

When I told my client he needed to be networking, he responded by telling me that it had been awhile since he contacted his network and he really couldn’t now because it wouldn’t be right to resurrect it just to use them. He’s right. It wouldn’t.

He was under the misconception that networking was about "him." In actuality, networking is all about “them” (your network) … at least initially. Effective networking is about how you can help others, knowing that you will reap what you sow.

If you have been neglecting your network, resolve today to begin nurturing it. Networking is key to a successful job search, and in most instances, it is also a critical component to being successful in your career.


Google has fast become a valuable 21st century tool. A volume of information is now available instantly, virtually eliminating the excuse of “not being prepared or informed” for any conversation.

––Want to find out information about the person(s) who will be interviewing you? Google their names. You might be surprised at the wealth of information you will find, including great ideas for ice breakers.

––And what, exactly, does Google have to say about you? You should know – because chances are very good that the person interviewing you already knows … including comments made in newsgroups, chat rooms, and other public forums.

––Want to find out information about a job title? Google it. For instance, you could type in “Director of Finance job requirements” and find posted positions along with a wealth of information about requirements for the DF position that is valuable for your resume and your interview answers.


I subscribe to numerous job–related communications and one of those is the Outplacement Report by AIRS ( that includes a list of companies that are reducing staff. As I was reading it last week, I wondered how job seekers typically react when they read about layoffs and downsizings.

So, what is your immediate reaction?

–– do you generalize that those companies are not hiring and scratch them off your list?


–– do you recognize that sometimes restructuring presents great opportunities?

While not always true, the last statement is often true. Of course, what is also true is that those opportunities are rarely published openings.


1. Ask permission to stay in touch! Once you’ve been contacted by a recruiter, ask them how often they would like you to check in with them and whether they prefer that contact by email or telephone.

2. Keep them updated! Send an updated resume to recruiters whenever you’ve made changes and include a brief email highlighting the changes. Most times recruiters won’t be able to place you immediately, but they will store your resume in their database and may contact you 6, 12, even 24 months later … so make sure they always have current contact information for you! Email instability is one of the primary challenges for recruiters being able to contact you.

3. Make it a partnership! Partnering with a recruiter is the best way to establish a long-term, mutually beneficial relationship. Give them what they need/ask for (yes, even salary requirements), so they can help you get what you want. Foster these relationships so you can stay informed of future opportunities when you are ready to move.

4. Sell, don’t tell! A well-prepared client with a good sense of the value he/she brings to the table significantly increases his chances of getting a job offer – (on average, 3 interviews versus 10 interviews to get an offer). Know your value and know how to articulate it.