Ethical, responsible or sustainable business is about much more than responsibility for the environment. It is important to internalise the idea of ethical business conduct, or business practice, in order to automate the way of working and generate the benefits of ethical behaviour.
At the heart of the idea is to conduct business in such a way that the business itself stands the test of time thanks to ethical practices: treating people and communities well and producing services or other products that people want. People - both customers and employees – are committed to the organisation and want what is good for it. At the same time, this takes care of reducing the number of "fires".
Black and white or shades of grey?
Ethical business would be a boring subject if it were all about black and white, about what is wrong and what is right. Most of us have ethical taste buds that can sense more accurately, recognising the different shades of grey. It does not always feel that this sensitivity of taste is in any way pleasurable for the owner, because it requires a lot of thought: what is involved and how to act in this particular situation in order to act ethically.
Why is ethical competence increasingly important?
Ethical competence strengthens an organisation and its resilience. Ethical leadership has many positive effects on staff and productivity. Ethical competence has the potential to create a positive cycle of psychological safety, strengthening the organisation towards flourishing. And on the other hand, the mandatory whistleblowing channel challenges us all to at least get the basics right.
There are no unambiguous guidelines on ethics that by following those you could think you are sailing on clear waters. Navigating the jungle of different situations is an intellectual and emotional challenge. People have a wide range of objectives, desires and needs, expressed in very different ways. Sometimes they are expressed in a very concealed way, sometimes loudly and sometimes silently.
Remember to stop and breathe
Leader's personality must be put into play. Sometimes one feels like wanting to cut corners, having no time to think and reflect. Isn't it time to take a breather then? However, the worst thing for a leader and a manager would be to stop noticing, seeing and sensing the shades of grey, to become convinced of his own view of right and wrong. That kind of persons draw attention in the headlines of the tabloids.
Helpful questions for your daily life:
- Could you act like this all the time?
- Could everyone act like I am doing now?
- Is this moving our organisation in the right direction?
- Would our customers be happy with this solution?
- Could I share this openly without feeling ashamed?
You can read more about our easy-to-use and reliable First Whistle whistleblowing channel or book a demo directly from our calendar.
In the demo we will go through:
- Key aspects of the Whistleblowing Directive
- First Whistle and technical specifications
- implementation of the channel
- any other questions you might have
I'm happy to help.
- Erika Heiskanen