In our last post we spoke about how HR has a role to play in embedding and monitoring ethical business behaviour. Doing business ethically must be in the mindset, the DNA of the people doing the business.
How can we do this?
Well it starts with opening up the conversations that are needed to honestly tackle and grapple with the complex issues we encounter, and establishing dialogue as regular practice and ‘the way things get done around here’.
Assist your employees to become more comfortable about raising and talking through dilemmas they face. It is something akin to flexing a muscle, the more you do it, the better you get at it and the more it becomes part of what you do ordinarily. You could provide small scenarios for discussion so that employees get used to discussing issues at team level. And you could tack some of these onto meetings that are regularly held. It shows a commitment to doing ethical business.
You can ask yourself these simple questions to flex your ethical muscle:
- Do I challenge what I feel uncomfortable about?
- How comfortable I am, and are we (our organisation) with dissent?
- When I take a decision, does it make me feel like I am behaving like the best possible version of myself? What is the right thing to do?
We all want to belong to a tribe and we all look for meaning. With working changing as rapidly as it does and jobs no longer being for life, we are increasingly looking to our professions to provide some stability and identity and a sense of what’s right and wrong. That will not come from the organisation of the future, says the CIPD Podcast Business Ethics and HR. Professional bodies also have a role to play through adhering to and promoting Professional Codes of Conduct.
The Institute of Business Ethics produced a toolkit called the Say No toolkit. It was developed to help employees make decisions in difficult situations by providing immediate practical guidance. You can find that here: www.saynotoolkit.net.
What could you do in your organisation?
If you would like to view the IPM Code of Conduct, click here.