In today’s age, it is imperative that companies work in the most ethical way.
Customers and partners demand transparency, and the Internet makes it possible for an issue or scandal to break in a matter of seconds.
Despite this, a survey found that 20% of British employees have witnessed misconduct at their workplace.
A more frightening statistic is that 61% of respondents claimed they were not happy with the outcome of voicing their concerns over the misconduct.
How can managers work more ethically and upkeep or improve their organisation’s image?
With these three ways.
Focus On The Employees
A big mistake that many leaders make is to consider that ethics is solely the responsibility of the management.
As such, they are the only ones to take seminars on this topic, or be knowledgeable about what is or is not ethical.
What’s important to understand is that the entire company is one team, and every single person needs to know what is and is not appropriate to do in the workplace.
Additionally, managers must establish clear consequences for someone who breaks the ethics code so that everyone knows that they cannot get away with it.
Consider setting up a business etiquette programme in your office to educate your team about your ethics policy.
Create A Safe Space
Unfortunately, a manager cannot be everywhere at once, which is why they need to rely on their staff members to report any and all misconduct to them.
The problem is that individuals are hesitant to do this because they are scared of repercussions, such as being bullied by colleagues, being demoted or losing their job altogether.
It is essential that leaders create a safe space where employees know they can come to them to speak their mind.
You must make your team feel comfortable and know they can always turn to you to report anything they have witnessed or suspect.
But you must also hold your end of the bargain to keep their anonymity and protect their jobs.
Plus, you have to act to correct the misconduct instead of just listening to it and doing nothing, otherwise no one will bother to come to you anymore.
For a manager to be ethical, it’s imperative to be honest and upfront with their workers.
Most of the issues arise when leaders try to hide something from their staff, even if they think it may be in their own best interest.
When you are honest with your staff about possible problems, you can use their support and creativity to fix them.
After all, multiple heads are better than one!
And if that’s not reason enough to be transparent – remember the results of this study that showed that transparency is not only good for ethics, it’s good for overall business success!
Head of Training and Development
(Image by Bigstockphoto)
Mark Williams is a learning and development professional, using business psychology and multiple intelligences to create fascinating and quickly-identifiable learning initiatives in the real-world business setting. Mark’s role at MTD is to ensure that our training is leading edge, and works closely with our trainers to develop the best learning experiences for all people on learning programmes. Mark designs and delivers training programmes for businesses both small and large and strives to ensure that MTD’s clients are receiving the very best training, support and services that will really make a difference to their business.