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February 8, 2013

The Importance of Ethics at Work

Receiving recognition of work, a salary increase, or offered a promotion, it is important to remember how you reached these victories.  Ethics in the workplace are easily blurred if they are not properly followed in the decision-making process.
Organizations that promote a culture of high ethics and values are able to reap benefits such as; improved trust and respect at all levels, fostering a positive work culture and improved customer service, and ensure viability of enterprise.
How do we know our behaviors live up to ethical behavior?  Start by knowing what is right, fair, honest and legal.  The training course, “Ethics at Work,” offers four steps to ethics in the workplace.  Dramatizations are used to demonstrate how to make ethical choices in different settings. These four steps are:

  1.  Respect, responsibility, results – achieve to be a great team member by working with integrity
  2. Say “no” with tact – state concern and objection without blame and propose an alternative method that is ethical, then ask for help and agreement
  3. Manage conflicting rights – achieve this using the technique; thought out, talked out, worked out, to find the ethical answer
  4. Walk the talk – people know our word is our bond, they can depend on us to do the right thing and we know the means we use to reach our goals are right and justifiable

As a rule, remember to do what is right and good rather than what is easy and comfortable.  As a leader it is even more vital to follow this rule.  In the course, “10 Behaviors of an Ethical Leader,” we are reminded to model the behavior you expect of others.
The 10 behaviors embrace:

  1. High values awareness
  2. High values accountability
  3. Leadership by example
  4. Ethical decision-making
  5. In-sync policies and practices
  6. Values and ethics education
  7. Attention to perceptions
  8. Steady incremental change
  9. Hire and promote ethical employees
  10. Recognize and reward

Whether in an entry-level position, or a CEO of a fortune-500 company, implementing ideas and making decisions using the organization’s guided values are imperative in sustaining integrity. Striving to influence the ethics and integrity in your workplace will spark assurance, consistency and achievement for employees and customers.

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