An Exercise: Honesty

Welcome to our Thursday afternoon “spiritual fitness exercise gathering”. I made a commitment at the annual MCPA Executive Training Institute prayer breakfast to make an exercise post every Thursday afternoon. The goal being to create a regular and consistent spiritual fitness gathering for public safety professionals, even if it is in a cyber spiritual world.

This week I was drawn to the topic of “Honesty” by an article in the IACP Police Chief Magazine “Should Police Officers Who Lie Be Terminated as a Matter of Public Policy?” (click here to link to the story)

The article appears in the “Chief’s Counsel” column and contains a lot of information on the impact of employee lying. Case law is cited as well as how different situations of dishonesty create different consequences. It is an article well worth reading. I spoke with a chief just last week who was struggling with a situation where an employee had lied. Without going into detail, the chief felt compelled to fire the employee even though the cop was a good officer, a conscientious employee and (except for the lying) an asset to the organization. He knew what he was going to do, he knew his department policy was and that his decision would be supported. But that didn’t make the situation any easier to deal with. As public safety leaders I am sure you have all been faced with similar situations.

So here is your exercise. How important is honesty in your organization, your family, your life? What impact does honesty or dishonesty have on your spiritual life and the spiritual health of your organization? Even if you have a solid grasp on how to deal with dishonesty, as did the chief described above, how does your involvement in a situation like his impact your spiritual health?

And finally, how do you define honesty? Is it ALWAYS the best policy? And for extra credit, how about honesty with yourself? What are the spiritual health consequences, of being dishonest with yourself?

Take Care