The Role of Ethics in the Workplace
Joseph (2000) noted that leaders who want to establish a practice of positive workplace ethics within their organizations should develop written ethics standards, provide ethics training, and ensure resources are available for employees in need of ethics advice. According to him, the list of potential benefits linked to an effective ethics program includes recruiting and retaining top quality employees, fostering a more satisfying and productive work environment, maintain the trust of employees to ensure continued self regulation, encouraging open discussion of ethical issues, providing ethical ...view middle of the document...
The survey discovered that the employees are also willing to go the extra mile for their organization, making it possible for the company to do more with less. And because they can be counted on to make independent decisions and take action in ways that are consistent with the company’s culture, objectives, and values, they require less supervision and direction and adapt easily to changing roles and responsibilities.
Ethical culture is the extent to which an organization’s ethical standards are given priority and promoted by its management, employees, policies, processes, and decision-making. Basically, the ethical culture for¬mally and informally teaches employees “how things are really done around here.” The more employees see others being held accountable for ethical actions and acting with integrity, the stronger the ethical cul¬ture of the organization will be. In order to assess the strength of an organization’s ethical culture, the Eth¬ics Resource Center has developed indices to mea¬sure employees’ perceptions of their peers, direct su¬pervisors, and senior leadership. Prior ERC research has shown that stronger scores on these indices lead to reductions in pressure to commit misconduct, fewer observations of misconduct, increased report¬ing of observations, and decreased retaliation against whistle-blowers.
The function of the ethics programs are meant to affect how people think about and confront ethical issues that arise on the job. By providing employees with ethics standards, training, and resources to get advice, organizations seek to create a work environment where it is okay for employees to admit that they have an ethical dilemma and resources are available to guide them in dealing with those dilemmas before taking decisions. It is okay to have a structure that mandates people to report instances where someone does something wrong. Ethical guidelines in the form of policies and practices give the employees the basic tools they need to take informed risks on behalf of the organizations. (Joseph, 2000)
The stron¬gest correlations between employee engagement and ethical culture involve the Top Management Culture and Supervisor Culture Indices, which measure em¬ployee perceptions of each group’s commitment to open and honest communication, positive ethical role modeling, and accountability.
Today’s employees recognize that their prospects for con¬tinued employment, career development, and ad¬vancement depend on their companies’ health and...