I had the opportunity to spend a few minutes this week speaking to and answering ethics questions for a select group of Interns working for the summer at a prestigious financial firm in New York. I was asked by the Director of Learning and Development if I would share some of my thoughts on business ethics as these interns prepare to go out into the corporate world.
There was a question revolving around the issues of job interviews and what to look from an ethics perspective. Here’s what I told them. When you go for a job interview:
- Compliance and ethics are not the same. Compliance is the letter of the law; ethics is the spirit of the law. Compliance is a “” and a priority. Ethics seemingly is neither.
- Ask to see organizations’ code of ethics. If they give you a code of conduct, ask again if they have a code of ethics, as they are not the same. If they do not, ask why not?
- If they do, ask how is this code of ethics and ethics training ongoing and inclusive?
- If they do not have a code of ethics, ask how do you implement and train your people on your mission statement and corporate values? Is it ongoing, how often, ?
The answer to these questions, in particular, will give an insight into your decision, your values and what your priorities are.
I was so impressed with their insightful questions, the “wanting to do the right thing.” and how open they were about asking the right questions.
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!