What Is Ethical Behavior in a Workplace? Ethical behavior at work has as much to do with the bottom line as it does with squaring your conscience.
An individual has the right not to be deliberately deceived. He has the right not to be forced to go against his conscience. He has the right to expect other parties to live up to their commitments and to behave according to the law. In the workplace, the employer has the right to expect employees to behave according to company policy.
Deliberate Deception Deliberate deception in the workplace includes Ethical behavior in a workplace credit for work done by someone else, calling in sick in order to go to the beach, sabotaging the work of another person and, in sales, misrepresenting the product or service to get the sale.
There are other examples of deliberate deception, but these show how damaging deception can be by using a person's trust to undermine his rights and security.
In a workplace environment, this results in conflict and retaliation. In a sales function, it can result in lawsuits from deceived customers.
Violation of Conscience Your sales manager calls you into his office and threatens to fire you unless you sell 50 large toasters. You know the large toasters are inferior products and have been selling the small toasters to your customers, instead. To keep your job, you must violate your conscience and recommend that your customers buy the large toasters.
Your boss is engaging in unethical behavior by forcing you to do something you know is wrong, and also risking the ire and potential loss of valuable customers to meet a product sales goal.
He may be engaging in unethical conduct because top management has forced him by threatening his job, too.
Coercion is also the basis for workplace sexual harassment and results in lawsuits. Unethical behavior often causes more unethical behavior. Failure to Honor Commitments Your boss promises you an extra day off if you rush out an important project by a certain date.
You work late hours and finish the project before the deadline. Ready for your day off, you mention it to your boss who responds "No, we have too much work to do.
In addition, you are likely to complain to your co-workers, causing them to distrust the promises of the boss and be unwilling to cooperate with his requests. Unlawful Conduct Padding an expense account with non-business expenses, raiding the supply cabinet to take home pens and notebooks and passing around unregistered or counterfeit software are examples of unlawful conduct in the workplace.
The person who steals from the company by padding her expense account or taking supplies for personal use risks losing her job. If a company decides to overlook such theft on the basis of maintaining employee morale by not firing a popular employee, other employees will also steal so they can feel they are getting the same deal as their co-worker.
Passing around counterfeit software, if discovered by the manufacturer, can cost the company through lawsuits and fines.
Disregard of Company Policy An employer is understandably concerned about avoiding lawsuits and angry customers because those things negatively affect profitability.
Most employers clearly state company policies against deception, coercion and illegal activities.
They also strive to convey an image of trustworthiness to their customers and employees. Corporate trustworthiness helps retain customers and valued employees, and the loss of either also negatively affects company profitability.
To disregard company policy is unethical because it has the potential to harm the company and other employees.The purpose of this article is to steer your thinking and action toward creating and sustaining an ethical workplace culture.
Managerial leaders and their people are invited to explore how values, actions, and behavioral standards can help steer organizational behavior. Ethical behavior is equally important in the workplace as it is in our personal lives. Everywhere business is conducted, ethics matters. A successful business depends on the trust of various parties—employees, managers, executives, customers, suppliers, and even competitors.
The purpose of this article is to steer your thinking and action toward creating and sustaining an ethical workplace culture. Managerial leaders and their people are invited to explore how values, actions, and behavioral standards can help steer organizational behavior.
Jan 15, · How to Promote Ethical Behavior in the Workplace. Clear, specific standards of conduct are the foundation of an ethical workplace. Putting these values into practice starts at the top, and executive officers must set the tone for the rest 33%(3).
Generally, ethical behavior is doing the right thing and adhering to professional standards. While this definition is a good start, it doesn't give specific guidance.
That why it's essential to have a codified set of ethical standards for your business. In the SHRM Foundation report, Olson describes an ethical workplace culture as one that gives priority to employee rights, fair procedures, and equity in pay and promotion, and that promotes.