As a Christian in business, I am bound to a different set of principles compared to those of a traditional business owner. For example, my mission statement, the vision for my company, and company name and/or company description all has a biblical foundation. Other business owners may be money, power, or fame driven but my company is driven on my love for Christ and a desire to please Him in every aspect of my life. This includes the area of my business.
Integrity is a broad term that a lot of people in business like to use, but what does it mean to have integrity? Webster describes the term integrity as firm adherence to a code of especially moral values. Another way of putting it is – doing what’s right, even when no one is watching.
Integrity is a way of life that should reflect in every area of your life, not just one or two areas. You can’t expect to have integrity as a business owner but not have it in your personal life and visa versa. If you’re honest at home then you are most likely to be honest at work as well. It’s a character trait that can’t be turned off or on. Either you have it or you don’t, it’s trivial.
Can you have integrity without having Christ, of course, but to what extent? It may not bother a business owner who has integrity to exaggerate his earnings. However, to a business owner who has integrity and who has Christ, this would be considered a lie, even if it is “just a little white lie,” it’s still a lie in the eyes of a loving God and He would not be pleased with lying no matter how small.
Therefore, as a Christian in business, I strive for excellence. I don’t strive for it because I am perfect, I make my share of mistakes, but because God is perfect and He has given me excellence and it would be unethical not to at least attempt to give Him my best.
The only piece of advice I can offer to my fellow colleges is to manage your business as if God Himself is your partner, because after all, He is. (wink)