The Power of Integrity by Gary Dickhart

Norman Marks, CRMA, CPA, is a vice president for SAP and has been a chief audit executive and chief risk officer at major global corporations for more than 20 years.


Every so often, somebody sends me a book and asks me to review it and share on my blog. 

A friend, former colleague, and recovering internal auditor, Gary Dickhart, has a new book out called The Power of Integrity (available several places, in paperback and e-reader form, including at Amazon).

Here are a couple of complimentary reviews from Amazon:

Over the past ten years, business literature has (understandably) focused much attention on business ethics. While the pursuit of ethical behavior is desirable, this book points out that conducting business with integrity will have a farther-reaching impact on both personal and business success as well as leading to a more ethical approach to business. The author uses his personal experiences in an interesting and sometimes humorous manner to illustrate his lessons in the power of integrity. His approach makes the lessons easy to understand and meaningful to anyone who has worked in a business. A quick read and overall a very good book.

Unique perspective on ethics in business — from a "middle manager's" viewpoint, as the author puts it. Compact, down to earth, practical, hands-on. Although material centers around audits/security/governance, the author relates personal experiences in general management challenges, including leadership, stewardship, and business integrity. Not a long book, but packed with interesting, useful advice.

Gary has worked at a number of organizations, primarily focusing on IT, internal audit, and information security. In this book, he discusses the need for integrity based on and using his personal experiences. For example, he talks about the effect on employees of a manager that does not always demonstrate integrity. Another interesting discussion focuses on the fact that many managers responsible for implementing new software systems delay investments in securing those systems. As Gary says, they are putting personal and corporate interests (cost savings) ahead of their duties to protect their customers' information.

I think the book is worth getting, although I will ask that you show patience with the poor quality of the editing.

Posted on Jul 16, 2012 by Norman Marks

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  1. Hi Sir Norman, I am an internal auditor of a big company in the Philippines where most of our industries are automotive. I know you are the expert in this area of internal auditing, thus, I would like to seek your indispensable opinion. We have this little argument with our Finance people where we have to classify a finding as a major one. By the way we are talking about system errors on our ERP. Here are my thoughts in our argument: to classify a system error as a major finding, my criteria were (1) Impact of system errors in the financial statements and (2) frequency of occurrence of the system error. Our Finance thoughts on how to classify the errors was (1) Entire ERP operation in a department or business division has stopped. May I know your thoughts on this Sir on what criteria should be used to identify a finding as “major”? Hope to hear from you soon sir. Thank you and best regards, Bern
  1.  Bern, I would classify based on the risks to business objectives. If the issue merits the attention of top management and the audit committee I would assess as major. I hope that helps.

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