Unethical practice ‘common in UK workplaces’ finds ILM/BITC study
Three out of five managers have felt pressured to behave unethically at work, according to new research from the Institute of Leadership & Management (ILM) and Business in the Community (BiTC).
The report, Added values: The importance of ethical leadership, found that 9% of managers have been asked to break the law at work at some point in their career, while one in 10 have left their jobs as a result of being asked to do something that made them feel uncomfortable. This is in spite of 77% of managers believing that, since 2008, the general public’s expectations of UK organisations’ ethical behaviour have risen.
In the survey of over 1,000 managers across the public and private sectors, 93% said their organisation had a values statement but over two fifths (43%) had been pressured to behave in direct violation of it, with 12% of managers saying that the correlation between employee behaviour and company values was not close ‘at all’ in their workplace.
In addition over a quarter (27%) of respondents were concerned their career would suffer if they were to report an ethical breach, with whistleblowing fears higher amongst more junior managers (17% of whom were certain of experiencing negative consequences) than directors (9%).
As a result of the research, the ILM and BiTC have made a number of recommendations for successfully embedding organisational values and ethics. These include businesses having a clear policy to encourage and enable staff to report any concerns over breaches of ethical conduct and the need for leadership to come from the top.
You can read the report and its recommendations in full here: http://www.bitc.org.uk/blog/post/beyond-buzzwords-how-make-values-matter