Integrity is Key to Any Meaningful Franchisor/Franchisee Partnership
By Steven Belmonte CEO, Vimana Franchise Systems LLC | October 28, 2008
Not necessarily - especially when your personal performance impacts your business performance. Once you divide your personality and your actions into two or more categories, you deviate from the very definition of the word "character." At its root, one's character is defined by one's integrity - "The quality or state of being complete, unbroken condition, unimpaired, of sound moral principle, uprightness, honesty and sincerity." (Defined by Webster).
Therefore, if your character - which defines who you are - is broken into two or more entities, you no longer have integrity because you are no longer "whole." Without integrity, you don't have much character. Unfortunately, without integrity it is still possible to run a successful business. However, the chance of your being successful is greatly minimized, and while certain people may do business with you, it's most likely out of necessity. When your integrity is low, "people know it."
How many times have you heard a franchisor or franchisee claim to operate with integrity? In the hospitality environment, integrity is achieved by walking the talk and doing for your franchisees, employees or guests what you say you are going to do.
Sounds pretty simple. . . and a good formula for a successful partnership, right? Partnership is achieved by accomplishing goals together and by teaming for the good of all parties. Unfortunately, just as in personal relationships, business partnerships sometimes fail because one of the parties takes his or her eyes off the original goal, or somewhere down the road loses integrity because of a flaw in his or her character (dishonesty perhaps, impaired judgment or in many cases the person "just doesn't care.")
Sink or swim?
In the movie "Titanic," one of the primary reasons the ship was considered unsinkable was because of the way the compartments in its hull were designed. The theory was that flooding in one compartment due to a breach in the hull wouldn't affect other compartments because of the high walls between them. What the ship's designers didn't consider, however, was that if the breach was big enough, water could spill over the walls from one compartment to the other, until the ship sank.