Credibility & Data?

July 28, 2009
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For my first blog ever I thought I would share from a book I am currently reading that has struck a deep and meaningful chord – the book is entitled “Credibility – How leaders gain and lose it, why people demand it” by James Kouzes & BarryPosner (Wiley 2003).

I am not sure whether people involved in managing data, people in data governance positions and people that extract information and knowledge from data for a living see a lot of parallels between the extracts I quote here and their work – I did.

The following are quotes from the book:
“Credibility is about how leaders earn the trust and confidence of their constituents.  It’s about what people demand of their leaders as a prerequisite to willingly contributing their hearts, minds, bodies and souls.”
…. “But somewhere along the way to the New Millennium notions of ethics, morality, honesty, character and personal discipline came to be viewed as quaint – at least by those from the me-first, free agent school of corporate strategy…”
“…some fundamentals however do not change.”  The fundamentals are:

      1.  Character Counts:  the authors here quote an anonymous poem that is


For my first blog ever I thought I would share from a book I am currently reading that has struck a deep and meaningful chord – the book is entitled “Credibility – How leaders gain and lose it, why people demand it” by James Kouzes & Bary Posner (Wiley 2003).

I am not sure whether people involved in managing data, people in data governance positions and people that extract information and knowledge from data for a living see a lot of parallels between the extracts I quote here and their work – I did.
The following are quotes from the book:
“Credibility is about how leaders earn the trust and confidence of their constituents.  It’s about what people demand of their leaders as a prerequisite to willingly contributing their hearts, minds, bodies and souls.”
…. “But somewhere along the way to the New Millennium notions of ethics, morality, honesty, character and personal discipline came to be viewed as quaint – at least by those from the me-first, free agent school of corporate strategy…”
“…some fundamentals however do not change.”  The fundamentals are:

      1.  Character Counts:  the authors here quote an anonymous poem that is a gem:

Be careful of your thoughts, for your thoughts become your words;

Be careful of your words, for your words become your deeds;

Be careful of your deeds, for your deeds become your habits;

Be careful of your habits; for your habits become your character;

Be careful of your character; for your character becomes your destiny.


For those of us that tend to strategise a lot it is good to remember that “Strategy is not a biological imperative.  It begins in our minds, gets expressed in words, and then gets translated into action.  Over time these actions become who we are …”.

2.    Individuals Act; Organizations Create Cultures:  “Organizations don’t act; individuals do.  Organizations don’t save lives; individuals do.  Organizations don’t create breakthrough products; individuals do.  Organizations don’t defraud; individuals do.” 

3.   Our System is Based on Trust:  “… our entire capitalist system is based on trust.  It’s not based on an investment model that’s taught in business school.  It’s not based on the price earnings ratio.  It’s not based on any of these rational concepts, and its not based on the numbers.  It’s based on whether people believe in the numbers and in the people who are supplying them.”

4.  Leadership is a Dialogue, Not a Monologue:  “Leaders really can’t impose values from the top …. The more people are permitted to express and to explore, the sooner we’ll discover our common values and our common vision … one of our shared values is to live and work in a world with integrity”