The Role of Employees in Implementing Business Ethics

A lot has been discussed about the role of managers in implementing ethical values in organizations, but little has been said about employees’ contribution to ethical practice in the workplace. Nevertheless, the role of employees in the implementation of business ethics and ethical culture cannot be underestimated.

Promoting ethics in the workplace depends on the willingness and participation of employees. There is no doubt that employees are the epitome of all operations, discussions, and relationships occurring in an organization. Without them, the organization can neither produce nor deliver any product or service.

Considering the centrality of employees in running organizations, it is by no means an overstatement to argue that employees should take part in the formulation and implementation of ethical codes, policies and values in an organization. The key responsibilities of employees in implementing business ethics in a company are:

1) Identifying and reporting cases of misconduct that violates the ethical rules and/or employment standards. This ensures that everyone follows the right set of ethical values.

2) Communicating ethically with customers: employees should take the responsibility to portray the company’s image positively before customers. Thus, they should show respect and use polite language when communicating with customers.

3) Sharing ideas about what they consider to be ethical behaviors. This allows the organization to develop a shared culture of ethical practice and common ethical values.

4) Working in teams to resolve conflicts using the required ethical standards. Employees can promote business ethics by applying the ethical code and policies in their daily team activities. This makes the ethical principles to be ingrained in every aspect of the business.

5) Providing feedback: employees provide valuable information to managers through feedback. Through their normal interactions with each other and with customers, employees can identify ethical dilemmas and provide their opinion about how to improve.

6) Training and Learning: Employees should participate in ethical training to ensure that they learn and apply the business code of ethics in their daily activities and interactions in the workplace.

In general, employees provide support and feedback to managers in the process of developing and implementing business ethics, ethical values, and principles in the organization. Leaders should involve all employees in ethical decision making to ensure that business ethics are uniformly implemented across the organization.

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