“but we must remember that good laws, if they are obeyed, do not constitute good government. Hence there are two parts of good government: one is the actual obedience of citizens to the laws, the other part is the goodness of the laws which they obey…”(Aristotle Politics 1294a-6). Therefore, what really are the reasons to have a code of ethics? Research reveals: 1. To help define what acceptable behaviors. 2. To promote high standards of practice. 3. To provide a benchmark for employees to use for self evaluation. 4. To establish a framework for professional behavior and responsibilities. 5. As a vehicle for company identity. Given these insights, certain questions need to be addressed. 1. Who decides what’s acceptable, the high standards, a benchmark, or a framework? If all if these “come down from on high” can “buy-in” be expected? 2. There must be a venue for all employees to have the opportunity for input for #1. 3. Where does the responsibility lie in promoting, reinforcing and enforcing the code of ethics? Compliance, HR, C-suite and what has been their training in the process of thinking ethically? 4. Is company identity that same as company reputation? If not, what’s the difference? Obviously, much thought and preparation need to go into the development of a code of ethics. So please go slow, think critically and implement carefully.
Like you, business ethics and ethical leadership expert, Frank Bucaro has seen the challenges and problems of corporate leadership, particularly over the past few years in regards to poor decision-making, SEC violations, and record breaking financial settlements in a number of different industries.
With over two decades of executive training, speaking, writing and with real life experiences, his view and approach to ethics in the workplace is uniquely different. He emphasizes that ethics is a moment-to-moment choice and has little to do with position, titles, personalities or education. Ethics is everybody’s responsibility from the top down.
His goal is to help organizations to:
a. Strengthen their ethics training initiatives in order to significantly decrease the odds of an ethical/compliance violation.
b. Energize, train and motivate employees to understand the value of consistent “high road” behavior as a business advantage.
c. Support individuals and thereby the organization by contributing to its success by quality, ongoing values based leadership development.
Frank is known for his very practical, slightly irreverent, yet somewhat humorous approach to ethics and leadership development. His conversational style and real life stories connect with his audience in a personal, intense and practical level.
Companies such as Bayer Healthcare, BP, ReMax International, EnMax Energy, Danone, etc. have partnered with Frank when they want to proactively stress the message, tools, insights and practical applications that good ethics IS good for business!