It’s important that all of the management staff exhibit good moral characteristics from the very CEO down. They need to consider all of their stakeholders and prioritize company ethics. It helps if they put it in writing that they aim to be an ethical company. Ethics is a set of moral principles that govern the behavior of a group or individual. They should take a proactive stance and donate to/sponsor charities and such. The related points of focus for achieving such commitment include the following:
Setting the tone at the top: the board of directors and management at all levels of the organizations demonstrate through their directives, actions, and behavior the importance of integrity and ethical values to support the functioning of the system of internal control.
Establishing standards of conduct: the expectations of the board of directors and senior management concerning integrity and ethical values are defined in the entity’s standards of conduct and understood at all levels of the organization and by outsourced service providers and business partners.
Evaluating adherence to standards of conduct: processes are in place to evaluate the performance of individuals and teams against the entity’s expected standards of conduct.
Addressing deviations in a timely manner: deviations of the entity’s expected standards of conduct are identified and remedied in a timely and consistent manner.
Codes of conduct help to reassure investors and other stakeholders, in particular, those looking for socially responsible investment, integrity, and a commitment to ethics.
Furthermore, employees generally prefer to work for organizations committed to values and ethics, and consumers tend to prefer to buy from organizations with strong records of adherence to standards of conduct and socially sensitive behavior.