In our opinion, one of the best U.S. companies in terms of integrity is L.L. Bean. Founded in 1912 as a mail order retailer, it sold one product: a waterproof boot called the Main Hunting Shoe or "Bean Boot." But in its first year of business, it faced a huge crisis. Fully 90 percent of the boots it shipped were defective. To get his new company off the ground, founder Leon Bean had offered a full money-back guarantee on his boots. Returning the revenue on 90 percent of his first shipment threatened to sink his business, but he made good on it. The result? High-level consumer trust that continues to this day, establishing L.L. Bean not only as a financially successful company, but one known for its stellar customer service.
Integrity is crucial to the success of a business...and to the success of an individual. Integrity doesn't just happen. It's an ongoing, deliberate effort to be who you say you are and to do what you say you are going to do...in other words, to be trustworthy. This is a choice we all have. We can choose the easy road or we can choose the more difficult path, the path of integrity. So what will you choose?
"Simply let your 'Yes' be 'Yes,' and your 'No,' 'No.'"