Ethical Performance
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Company culture needs to celebrate ethical behaviour, says IBE

Businesses need to celebrate ethical behaviour if they are to succeed in embedding a valued ethical culture, says a new guide from the Institute of Business Ethics (IBE).

The IBE maintains that while 75% of the FTSE100 has a code of ethics, the continuing media stories of unethical business practices show that messages about ethical practice is failing to permeate. To address the problem, it has published anew Good Practice Guide, Communicating Ethical Values Internally. 

Using case studies from organisations like Deloitte, Lockheed Martin, Heineken, L'Oréal,  Diageo, Serco, Mitie, Rolls Royce, IPF and Balfour Beatty, the guide shares examples of some ways of communicating messages about ethical values to employees so that they are empowered to ‘do the right thing’.

It also offers practical advice on how to communicate ethics through company leadership, line managers, codes of ethics, training and the workplace environment, as well as examining the latest technologies using video and audio, such as social media and gamification.

Katherine Bradshaw, author of the guide, said: “Company culture comes from the stories we tell each other. Whether those stories create an ethical narrative is another matter. By looking at ways to celebrate ethical behaviour in your organisation, and by using the tools in this Guide to tell those stories, you can communicate what ‘doing business ethically means’ for your business.”

Philippa Foster Back CBE, IBE’s director added: “As the continuing scandals in the media show, messages about ethics are not getting through to employees. This Good Practice Guide offers practical advice and case studies to help these messages, not only be heard, but understood as well. ”


Picture credit: © Valentin Armianu |

UK & NI Ireland | Business ethics

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