Character first, before anything else.
Virtues should be at the core of who we are. Guiding us, pushing us to do what is right. Everyday. Every hour. Every second. We should hone our virtues continuously, with every action we take (and don't take).
Integrity, a component of character, keeps us whole. That's the very definition of the word: "the state of being complete or undivided." It keeps us from being getting shattered. So when external pressures threaten to break us, ethical, moral conduct keeps us intact.