FIT stands for Fairness, Integrity and Transparency. I use it to measure the health of my actions as a leader from a moral perspective. It’s not always fun, which is probably why I’ve found it to be useful.
To help you be FIT, here’s a simple self-evaluation questionnaire for you. I urge you to go through it alone or within your leadership team on a constant basis, especially when facing a major decision.
F for Fairness
- If your team members would discuss how you treated them in similar circumstances, would they feel they were treated in an equal manner?
- Is the reasoning for your actions easy to understand by other people?
- Do you feel you hold the same standards and norms for everyone you deal with?
I for Integrity
- Looking back to this moment from the near future, can you say you’ve stayed true to your principles, commitments and agreements? In other words, you wouldn’t feel the need to explain yourself to others (or yourself).
T for Transparency
- If all your decisions and actions would be shared publicly, would you be okay with that?
- Would sharing your decisions and actions publicly increase your team’s trust in you?
If you answer “no” to these questions, you’re on a slippery slope.
It doesn’t matter what your principles or values are. You don’t need to run a fully transparent organization. But be whatever you are on a constant, self-aware and open manner. In other words: don’t pretend.
Being FIT is a self-enforcing state, all of the three components positively influencing each other. The more FIT you are, the more likely you are to stay that way:
Fairness enforcing Integrity: if you treat others fairly, you rarely need to find excuses.
Integrity enforcing Fairness: if you constantly act according to your principles and values, it is easy for others to know what “fair” means to you. (Note: It doesn’t matter what it is, as long as people know what to expect and their expectations meet reality.)
Transparency enforcing both Fairness and Integrity: If everything you do can meet the public eye, you are much more inclined to act in good faith and not start cutting corners.