May 12, 2012
Values and Ethics
Integrating strong values and ethics into your organization can provide a solid base of principles for you, as a leader, and your staff to follow.
Having a strongly implemented values and ethics code in business provides your operation with a happy and healthier environment and assists with positive impacts and impressions with the public, partners and consumer bases.
Consistent values and ethics in current day practices across private and government sectors include respect, integrity, fairness, transparency, and excellence. Many of these values are interlinked and as when one demonstrates high scores in one value, strengths in other values usually follow.
Respect must be highlighted as a core value. Respect must be demonstrated and practiced on all levels, as people in the organization must be respected, no matter what position, organizational level, or background. Everyone should be treated with respect and fairness, and must respect that everyone has differing personal values, strengths and qualities. People in the organization must act and speak with respectful dialogue and should interact with other staff, partners, external stakeholders and customers in a respectful manner. In upholding respect as a core value, engagement and collaboration can happen more frequently in open environment.
In order to deliver honest, truthful services and at the same time undertake high level of ethical standards, an organization must strongly embed integrity into all levels of the organization. By holding high standards in integrity, the organization and people will gain the highest levels of trust necessary for dealing in the private sector and government. High integrity leads to high levels of confidence internally with units, team and staff and externally with partners, stakeholders and customers.
Fairness must be integrated into operational elements and in practices with the consumer. Whether we are developing staffing actions or determining decisions, fairness must be upheld as a key factor in decision making process. As fairness practices build in an organization and is integrated into elements, other values such as integrity and respect improve as well.
Transparency is the practice of providing informed truthful information internally and externally. Strong transparency is demonstrated well you release the information and factors that are behind decision-making. Transparency at high levels builds up confidence in staff and the organization and leads to higher integrity.
Strive for excellence in all aspects of business, from HR practices, to customer service to the sharing of best practices across all employees and operational units. Excellence should be embedded into the company values, but should also be strongly encouraged to staff as a personal value.
Conflict of Interest
When your own actions (personal or business) potentially constitute an advantage for you, family, friends, colleagues, partners and clients, you may be in what may be perceived or considered a real, measurable material gain. Policies should be developed and implemented to ensure staff have the ability to at least identify and disclose any potential conflict of interest issues. There should be mechanisms in place to assess the situation and if needed, excuse the individual from duties, or an activity. A strong conflict of interest code / policy will build confidence and integrity.
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