Integrity in Private Investigations

Jul 9, 2012

In private investigations, integrity is commonly referenced. Practically all investigators espouse and profess to have “it”. It’s a part of many business slogans, models and mission statements. The word is often used, but less frequently practiced. Why is that? Colonel Slade, a character in the movie Scent of a Woman, stated it best: “because it’s just too d*mn hard”.

You either have it, or you don’t. Claiming to have it has seemingly become a business necessity, particularly in investigations. So what is “it”, and what makes “it” so difficult for some to practice? Most importantly, how does investigator integrity affect legal case work? There are many definitions, but essentially integrity requires one to act according to a moral code, a code which extends well beyond the practice of investigations to life itself. It encompasses values like honesty and ethics; and if you have “it” you don’t compromise. Therein lies the difficulty. If you don’t compromise, and adhere to a higher standard, sacrifice is required. The absolute truth can be painful, difficult, brutal and it is human nature to avoid. Integrity occasionally requires one to venture down that road, to open oneself up to criticism. To act with integrity is ultimately not a business decision, but rather a conscious one.

An investigator becomes the eyes and ears of the client. Results presented with integrity involve the facts, and only the facts of the case presented equally. The “good” are not overly highlighted, and the “bad” are not sugar-coated or omitted all together. You need the facts, clear and unbiased to make proper decisions on a case. Do you have absolute faith in your private investigator? Does he/she consistently accept responsibility for his/her actions?

An impressive resume, a slick presentation, a convincing sales pitch: none of it matters without integrity. To truly find a private investigator with integrity, look past this overused word. Instead, look your investigator in the eye and see the person. How do they conduct themselves in this world? That’s what really matters.

– Richard Q.