What Do You Need To Change To Be More Successful?

WHAT I DO: I help credit union executives, small business owners and entrepreneurs achieve professional growth, career advancement, increased earnings and work-life balancer by providing a customized developmental process based upon their unique needs.

WHO I WORK WITH: I partner with executives, business owners and senior-level managers including:

• Credit Unions
• CPA firms
• Auto Repair
• Publishing
• Hospital CEO’s.
• Chambers of Commerce
• Non-profits

WHY IT WORKS: When you partner with me, you get the most efficient, effective and affordable executive coaching and strategic planning processes that leaders like you are looking for right now.

WHAT MAKES ME DIFFERENT? I have run a business and faced many of the challenges you now face. I was for 29 years a credit union CEO, and prior to that in in consumer finance. I am a Vietnam Vet. My knowledge has been acquired over a long haul. I do not offer cookie-cutter solutions. In fact, I do not even suggest a solution until I understand you, your organization and your needs. No prescriptions without a diagnosis.

HOW IT WORKS: We begin by talking by telephone about your organization, your vision, and what does success look like. I start with a blank page and simply listen. I request 30-minutes initially, and then schedule a follow-up call to share what I feel is the best solution for you.

READY TO TALK? Reach out to me here on LinkedIn, e-mail me at tom@kesgroupllc.com, visit online at www.kesgroupllc.com or call me direct at 941-650-9027.
4 minutes reading time (706 words)

Are You Living With Integrity and Ethics?

Honest Man

“Control is not leadership; management is not leadership; leadership is leadership. If you seek to lead, invest at least 50 percent of your time in leading yourself--your own purpose, ethics, principles, motivation, and conduct. Invest at least 20 percent leading those with authority over you and 15 percent leading your peers.”Dee Hock, Founder and CEO Emeritus of VISA

Over the course of my career of more than 40 years, 29 of those in the credit union industry, I cannot recall any speaker or any of my peers debating the differences between integrity and ethics. It may have been that we were all afraid of opening Pandora’s Box or perhaps, it hit too close to home. I was no angel. With the advantage of 20/20 hindsight, neither were many of my peers, especially in the regulatory agencies.

Integrity is defined as adherence to moral and ethical principles; soundness of moral character; honesty. Ethics are the moral principles by which an individual determines his or her actions. Seems like semantics, doesn’t it? In practice, if you possess a clearly defined set of personal values, or “core personal beliefs”, which are non-negotiable, that serve as guides to your choices and actions, you’re operating with integrity, based on the ethics you hold dear. Your ethical standards contain do’s and don’ts. Whether you adhere to them or not is the challenge.

In other words, we all have the obligation to try to do the right thing; however, it’s often the case that leaders struggle and fail to act at all so as not to do the wrong thing. Sometimes, acting with integrity simply means having the guts to make a decision, even if it turns out to be the wrong one. If your intentions were pure when you made the decision, your co-workers and customers will be more likely to forgive your mistake than if the mistake happened because you failed to make any decision to try to prevent it.

James Thomas of www.allianceforintegrity.com speaks and writes on this subject and makes the distinctions that upright conduct, exemplary reputation, trustworthiness, adherence to standards, values, rules and principles, plus purpose, are all included in integrity. Without integrity, he says, all else turns to sand; and with it, comes fundamental benefits and higher performance. I completely agree. I will take it a step further, though. My view is that ethics and integrity are equal.

There are, without a doubt, a few organization leaders who have enjoyed success, despite a lack of integrity and ethics. However, from my experience, it usually catches up with them, at some point. Think the 2008 Banking Collapse. It was only a matter of time before the unscrupulous behavior of many of the financial systems’ leaders caused the system as a whole to self-destruct.

When I work with a coaching client, we discuss ethics and beliefs and how both affect them, personally and professionally. I have never accepted a client who does not model ethical behavior in all aspects of their life and work.

Your family, friends, co-workers, associates, customers and followers endow you with their trust and confidence because you demonstrate ethics and integrity. That you possess and demonstrate both guides your actions and shapes you as an ethical, successful organization leader and an example to others. It gives you the ability to inspire others to achieve their greatness.

So, where do you stand when it comes to your actions being in line with your ethics and integrity?

Take a sheet of paper and begin to write your personal narrative in response to the question: “Where do I stand now?” And be honest. Doing so will help you determine not only where you are, but also where you want to go.

  • Has your behavior been consistent with your values?
  • Do your values extend to your family and your business?
  • Do you take full responsibility for your personal conduct?

Probes: Use these items below to start a dialogue in your organization:

  • The honor code at almost all universities and military academies is “I will not lie, cheat or steal, or tolerate those who do.” What is your honor code?
  • Have you relinquished honesty and accountability in the name of expediency?
  • Does our organization have clearly defined values?
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Friday, 26 April 2019


“As a Senior Executive in the Credit Union industry - I have personally experienced along with my staff - what Tom brings to the table as a Coach. Tom is uniquely qualified from his experiences as CEO and President of a Credit Union and brings not only that experience but has a special way of identifying unique qualities that we all have but sometimes have not fully realized and utilized in the work place and in our personal lives. Tom delivers in such a way that exhibits high integrity and a genuine concern for his clients -- I strongly recommend Tom for your organization if you are looking for ways to inspire and motivate your staff to reach to the next level.”…Tim Smith

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P.O. Box 2025
Clayton, GA 30525