The Integrity Basket: Honesty and the Courage to Always Do the Right Thing

Article Categories: Environment & Legal and Ethics

Don't we all love a workplace where everyone holds the highest standards of moral principles? You know, with people supporting each other because it's the right thing to do… Working on solutions instead of putting a lid on bad news… Staying on a stressful job simply because your patients need you… what a career paradise!

Even though no such perfection exists, it doesn't mean that we're not supposed to work our way to achieve it. Filling the integrity basket has so many benefits. For one, it fosters a positive work culture that overcomes the challenges of the job. It also improves productivity and provides a rich experience for employees. Most importantly, it creates a safe environment for patients.

Having integrity is such a highly-valued characteristic of a worker. Nursing assistants like you can serve as a role model of good morals by doing the following tips:

1. Be honest.

Speak only of the truth. Stand for truth. Be the real you. Honesty lets you live an empowered life because you don't have to look over your shoulder constantly. You are guilt-free because you have nothing to hide.

Be truthful in everything you do. Don't be tempted to jot down vital signs measurements you didn't take or say that you performed a procedure even if you didn't. Lastly, use honesty to build others.

2. Always choose to do the right thing.

Deciding to do what's right isn't always comfortable, especially if it puts your career or that of your co-worker on the line. Sometimes when you do the right things, unfortunate consequences come together with the good ones. For example, when you expose fraudulent activities in your workplace, you do help ensure patient safety, but doing so can also put you in hot water with the management and your co-workers.

Backing out seems to be an easy escape away from such consequences. You see, it takes incredible courage to stand by what's right. But remember that in the end, you are your own judge. Will you be proud of the choices you made in the past? Or would you regret that you took the easy way out?

Doing the right thing not only defines your character as a person but also gives meaning to your job as a CNA.

3. Preserve trust.

Someone with high integrity would always take extra care to keep the trust of others. In the healthcare industry, trust is the foundation of all services.

All workers, CNAs included, must ensure that the confidence in the healthcare system is intact. To do this, always maintain patient confidentiality and demonstrate competence. Only then will you earn the trust of your patients and colleagues.

4. Be respectful.

Respect is a sign of maturity as well as integrity. Being courteous and showing good manners means that you regard others properly.

Consideration for others also shows that you value their comfort and respect their feelings. Attentive listening and being gentle with words give due regard to others.

You can also show respect by not judging their views and opinions. It is crucial to be fair in all your dealings regardless of race, culture, or status.

5. Be responsible for your actions.

A true sign of integrity lies in being ready to accept the consequences of one's actions – the good, the bad, and everything in between. But first, it starts with having the courage to admit one’s mistakes. Owning up to one’s mistakes is quite courageous and admirable.

6. Say no to bullying.

Hostile behavior at work fosters a culture of fear that results in many destructive outcomes.

The victims of bullying experience tremendous stress. They suffer physically, emotionally, and mentally. Bullying victims tend to commit errors to the patients' detriment.

Participating in any bullying act, or even just condoning it, is a sign of a weak character, so build and give support instead of break.

7. Follow rules and regulations.

Policies are put in place to define expected behaviors at work. They provide a safe, predictable, and stable work environment. Following protocols means that you align yourself with your agency's visions and goals. You are ready for growth and bigger responsibilities.

8. Refuse valuable gifts in exchange for special favors.

Sometimes, you may encounter people who would attempt to get what they want through bribery. It's enticing to accept a gift, especially if it is of great value, but it is also subtly asking you to be unfair, play favorites or break the rules. There is no integrity in this deal, so politely decline such offers.

A CNA beyond reproach is worthy of praise and recognition - a true asset to the organization and a real health warrior. Always fill your integrity basket with the good stuff so that you can proudly look back at each day without regret.


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