News & Insights
Foundational Value: Absolute Integrity
- By David Schenkein
Absolute Integrity is a critical guidepost for us as we embark on the tremendous task of building a great company. We are trying to do two incredibly difficult things at the same time – create breakthrough drugs in a brand new space and build a unique company. Vital to both goals is a culture in which we treat everything we do and everyone with whom we interact with absolute integrity.
We are deeply committed to developing treatments that will change patients’ lives and we can’t do that with anything less than absolute integrity. We must approach this mammoth task ethically, morally and in keeping with the “do no harm” dictum from the Hippocratic oath, which requires not just integrity, but integrity that is unflinching and unwavering – absolute.
We know that creating an environment that encourages creativity and collaboration is essential to building a successful company. And the only way to do that is to treat each other with the same absolute integrity we apply to our work.
In a world where “spin” and misinformation are common and attention spans are short, it is sometimes hard to point to examples of companies with high integrity. The pharma and biotech industries continue to take a beating in the public opinion polls – today some people even think of the industry the same way they think of tobacco companies. There are a lot of reasons for this, but one explanation may be that the public believes the industry has lost its integrity “compass.” At Agios, we aim to hold integrity as critically important no matter the challenges.
That’s why the word “absolute” is so important. While many companies may claim that integrity is a vital element of their culture, at Agios we are committed to walking the walk, not just talking the talk. When we claim to act with integrity, we mean it. Absolutely.