Articles — Ethics

Not Having Standards or Ethics Can Hurt Your Business

Business Ethics

Not Having Standards or Ethics Can Hurt Your Business

Ethics are general principles that a person or individual uses to determine what is right or wrong in a situation. They are based on the values that the held by those involved. When you are operating a business, it is very important that you not only define but also practice the ethics that you hold as being very important. You cannot assume that everyone has the same values and so, it is best to have these in written format. That way you can communicate them to others and also, if necessary, hold staff and contractors accountable. Some businesses actually state...

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Breaking Confidentiality Can Hurt Your Business

Business Ethics

Breaking Confidentiality Can Hurt Your Business

Have you ever told someone a secret and asked the other person to not tell only to find out that several people have the information that you wanted to be protected? How did you feel about that? I bet you were hurt and shocked and angry. You also likely decided that the person who you trusted is no longer trustworthy. Well that is how clients feel when you offer confidentiality and then do not honour it. They gave you their trust when they told you their story and shared information with you but, now that they know that you will...

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Offensive Humour Can Hurt Your Business

Business Ethics

Offensive Humour Can Hurt Your Business

Sometimes one person thinks that something is funny but another person thinks the exact same thing is totally unacceptable and offensive. Because of this, it is very important that you are careful about what you say and the type of joke you might want to tell other people. Have you ever been in a group of people when someone tells a joke that not everyone laughs about? It can be very uncomfortable, especially if you look at the face of the person or people who are not laughing. They might not say anything in response but their body language leaves...

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Staff Issues Can Hurt Your Business

Business Ethics

Staff Issues Can Hurt Your Business

People are unique and when you have staff you will need to consider that there might be problems because of differing perspectives and behaviours of the individuals involved. There are a number of things that staff can do (or not do) that will hurt your business: 1. Not get along with others - Personalities can clash and sometimes there are people who seem to just like causing trouble. They might gossip, back stab co-workers or have a negative attitude that causes a toxic environment. 2. Not have skills or competence - Sometimes people are in jobs that they are unable...

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Not Being Honest Can Hurt Your Business

Business Ethics

Not Being Honest Can Hurt Your Business

Sometimes my adult children are surprised about the relationship with my grandchildren. I can, at any time, ask them "What do I love more than you?" and, without thought each will state "The truth!" Of course, the answer is "Definitely". Last summer one of my twelve-year old grandsons seriously asked me if I really meant it, seemed that he was surprised that anyone could possibly feel this way when his whole life he has been told how much he is loved. It's not like he was upset or anything. He was just confused. I explained that if a person is...

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Past Secrets Can Hurt Your Business

Business Ethics

Past Secrets Can Hurt Your Business

Most people enjoy a good mystery movie. They sit on the edge of the seat, waiting for the plot to play out and the pieces to fit together into an understandable whole. In some ways, life is like that. We meet a new character and do not have a lot of information about them, so we tend to base everything on first impressions. Then, as time goes by, and we learn more about the other person, that perception might change being either better or worse than the original one. Many people have past secrets either in their own personal life...

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Affairs Can Hurt Your Business

Business Ethics

Affairs Can Hurt Your Business

It seems that the number of people who come to see me about affairs that one or both of them have been having is increasing. I see and hear the devastation and damage that is done when trust is broken and the desperation to find ways to try to repair it. Usually an affair starts out with an attraction. Someone might feel good when in the presence of the other person and look forward to having this repeated over and over again. Sometimes an unmet or deep need to be cared about is filled. One encounter leads to another and...

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What to Do If Your Business Conducts Unethical Practices

Business Ethics

What to Do If Your Business Conducts Unethical Practices

One of the keys to having an ethical practice is to be willing to correct wrongs and work until you have done so. You see ethics is about doing the right thing. Most regulatory bodies for professions have a Code of Ethics that outlines the things that are expected as well as a process to ensure that ethical practice is being done. The steps to dealing with an issue are as follows: Clearly state the problem Gather information from all parties involved in order to be aware of various perspectives Consult with people who have expertise in your field and...

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Ethical Leadership in Business

Business Ethics

Ethical Leadership in Business

The key to ethics is to do no harm. When someone is in a leadership position s/he has responsibility to not only ensure that this occurs but also to deal with issues that might threaten their environment. There are several things that affect the ethics of an individual or organization: Values - These are the things that we hold dear. They are ideas that we want to protect and are usually shared by a group, community or country. For example, in Canada, we value freedom and honour those who have fought for our country in order to allow us to...

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How to Ensure Your Business Is Ethical

Business Ethics

How to Ensure Your Business Is Ethical

It sounds easy to merely state that you know what is "ethical." It should be common sense, right? Well common sense isn't that common, and it doesn't make sense to everyone. It never ceases to amaze me how most people think that they are "right" about the way things should be done. This is very apparently, especially when it comes to divorcing parents who each not only believe but also strongly communicate the fact that they know what is best for the children and the other person doesn't. People throw around the word "fair." Well, fair means very different things...

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