Good ethics should be considered an equally important factor to build a strong business and culture just like other factors such as salary, fulfilling work, good management, and more. In fact, according to a new 2016 Deloitte Millennial Survey, respondents said that workplace culture and responsibility are key factors that determine how successful a business will be, which underlines how important this is to build a strong business.
What this means is that for the current generation filling up the workforce, good ethics are crucial to the long-term success and growth of a company. These are values millennials hold important. Companies need to be aware of this fact if they want to hire and retain a workforce of people that will help them grow a successful company.
So how do good ethics build a strong business? And what benefits does this bring to a company?
Good Ethics Help People Make Better Decisions
Good ethics help people make better decisions that are in the long-term interests of the company, therefore helping to build a strong business. In fact, it’s fair to say that poor ethics have actually played a role in the demise of many companies. A classic example of this is Enron. As this article by the Markula Center for Applied Ethics points out, Enron had a toxic culture that played a major role in the collapse of that company. In essence, the absence of good ethics from the company sowed the seeds for the company’s demise.
Whereas a company with a great culture, that focuses on good ethics, is more likely to hire and retain staff that will make good decisions that aid the long term growth and success of the company. Recent research also tends to back up this argument. In the study titled Ethical Leadership and The Psychology Of Decision Making, researchers David Messick and Max Bazerman found that poor ethics leads to unethical decision making.
Their research found that organisations that focused on developing good ethics were more likely to benefit from good decision making from their staff. According to Messick and Bazerman, this is largely because of psychological tendencies that lead to more ethical decision making and vice versa.
This makes clear how important it is for companies to develop an ethics programme that encourages good ethics throughout the business and to develop the behaviour amongst their workforce.
Good Ethics Removes The Temptation To Engage In Misconduct
Misconduct in the workplace is always an issue for companies. One of the most effective ways to reduce it is via good ethics. If companies have workplaces where good ethics are fostered and encouraged, it means that there will be less chance for misconduct to occur. Furthermore, it also means that employees are much more likely to report any observed misconduct.
A great example of this is the National Business Survey of Fortune 500 Employees. In the survey, respondents listed the following reasons for why they wouldn’t report observed misconduct:
- 62% believed that no corrective action would take place
- 42% were worried that their reports wouldn’t be confidential
- 29% said they feared retaliation from co-workers
It’s quite clear from the results of this survey that when good ethics are not practiced or encouraged, that misconduct becomes a much bigger issue than it should be. By focusing on developing a workforce that practices good ethics, misconduct can be reduced and the workforce becomes stronger and more company-oriented.
One simple way to outline this in your own company is by developing an Employee Handbook that elucidates what is expected of employees while working at your company, which will help you build a strong business.
Final Words: How Good Ethics Will Help You Build A Strong Business
It’s abundantly clear that good ethics plays a major role in the kind of decision making processes used by staff in an organisation, which affect the ability to build a strong business.
Decisions are made everyday in a business that shape the future of a company, make sure your employees are making decisions that are going to shape the company’s future positively rather than negatively (as was the case with Enron).
Good ethics are vital if you want to build a strong business. One guaranteed way to really focus on this is by outlining it in your company’s Staff Handbook. We can create a bespoke Staff Handbook for you and your business today.