Workplace Ethics - Important in Business

Providing employees with a workplace ethics policy will help prevent behaviour problems from developing. Businesses that fail to provide ethical standards for employee behaviour, can sometime find themselves embroiled in litigation.

Not only that, but such companies are also likely to have employees who are dissatisfied and this can eventually lead to a decrease in productivity. Developing and instituting good workplace ethical behaviour standards will provide employees with feelings of respect and recognition.

Developing Workplace Ethics

In developing a code of ethics, a company should look at all aspects of its organization, and include all employees and management personnel. Knowing the diversity of its employees, including their skills and training will provide the foundation for a comprehensive code of ethics.

Ethics in Customer Service

Customers are just as important as company employees, and businesses should keep this in mind when developing their ethics codes. Respect and honesty in all customer interactions should also be part of the ethics guidelines.

Ethical Influence

Team leaders, supervisors and others in leadership positions should be aware that their behaviour influences the behaviour of the rest of the company's employees. Management can have a great influence on the people who are tasked with manufacturing goods and securing sales. If an officer, manager or supervisor demonstrates poor ethics, then employees may feel that they can also behave inappropriately.

The influence that owners and management have upon their employees may be subtle but it is very real. Owners and management personnel should strive to hold themselves to the highest standards of moral and business ethics. In turn, all employees can then be expected to behave in an ethical manner.

Ethical Choices

Some employees will naturally have strong moral standards. These employees will not hesitate when faced with a difficult ethical choice. Others again, when faced with a difficult ethical choice will hesitate before choosing, and some will make the wrong ethical decisions.

Management should always listen to the employees' complaints, as a failure to act upon complaints indicates poor ethical judgement. When employee complaints and concerns are ignored or dismissed, it can lead to dangerous and inappropriate behaviour which may later create serious problems.

In many instances, employees know more about what goes on inside a company than do management or the owners. A management that fails to act upon employee information may find itself in difficult situations later because of management's in-action.

Ethical versus Unethical Behaviour

Ethical behaviour, especially regarding employee behaviour, should not be a gray area. Employers should provide clear examples of the ethical behaviour they expect their employees to follow.

Service providers such as emergency medical technicians, law enforcement officers and in-home health care workers are constantly faced with ethical choices in carrying out their daily duties. These individuals will make better choices if the company they work for has an effective set of ethics guidelines in place.

Businesses should hold themselves, and their employees, to a very high level of moral and ethical code of conduct. Workplace ethics should also be utilized in all aspects of the business. Businesses that hold themselves to these higher standards, are usually rewarded through increased customer and employee loyalty.