A hand building a staircase out of wooden blocks

Creating and maintaining a strong ethical culture along with a focus on corporate social responsibility can have significant, positive benefits to a business including increased sales and profits, as well as increased employee loyalty and productivity. A strong ethical culture will help ensure employees are making good ethical decisions for the business on a consistent basis.

Examples

Company Snapshot: At Costco, Culture is King

BY JESSICA GUO The first of three Company Snapshots, these research-based pieces by guest author Jessica Guo look at aspects of successful companies that can…

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Adams Consulting: Where family business & business ethics align

Better Business Bureau Ethics TORCH Award Finalist Adams Consulting discuss how to earn customer trust by following an internal ethics…

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ICC Restoration: Ongoing ethics

Better Business Bureau Ethics TORCH Award Finalist. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TEiRSP9IRhs Used by kind permission of the Better Business Bureau of Minnesota &…

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Coordinated Business Systems: An ethical business system all-around

Better Business Bureau Ethics TORCH Award Finalist. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=39GuHVI6RkE Used by kind permission of the Better Business Bureau of Minnesota &…

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Countryside Heating & Air: Ethics at the core

Better Business Bureau Ethics TORCH Award Finalist. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bEFmxJeV0M8 Used by kind permission of the Better Business Bureau of Minnesota &…

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Monarch Builders: Ethical culture is the foundation

Better Business Bureau Ethics TORCH Award Finalist. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ndceV27nG8M Used with kind permission of the Better Business Bureau of Minnesota &…

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All American Restoration: Building ethics

Better Business Bureau Ethics TORCH Award Finalist Used with kind permission of the Better Business Bureau of Minnesota & North…

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Handi Medical Supply: Keeping Ethics Handi

Better Business Bureau Ethics TORCH Award Finalist Used with kind permission by the Better Business Bureau of Minnesota & North…

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How to Make Lying at Your Company Normal

Earlier this month at the Beacon Theater, in New York City, Daniel Kahneman, famed author of Thinking, Fast and Slow,…

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Redefining customer service

MOO uses its values as a model for what it means to be exceptional. You've probably seen MOO's catchy business…

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Practical Guidance

Corporate Culture

BY ETHICAL SYSTEMS The ethical culture in an organization can be thought of as a slice of the overall organizational culture. So, if the organizational culture represents “how we do things around here,” the ethical culture represents “how we do things around here in relation to ethics and ethical behavior in the organization.” The ethical culture represents the organization’s “ethics personality” (Trevino & Nelson, 2011). From an ethical systems perspective, creating and sustaining a strong ethical culture is fundamental to creating an organization that supports people making good ethical decisions and behaving ethically every day. There are several forces and factors that lead…

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Internal Reporting

BY JEREMY WILLINGER Internal Reporting refers to any time that a member of an organization (or a former member) tells someone else about an illegal or immoral practice, if the telling is done in the hope that someone will do something to change the practice. In the great majority of cases, employees tell someone within the organization and don’t want to cause any bad publicity for the organization—this is sometimes called internal whistle blowing, though we prefer to call this internal reporting. When organizations punish or discourage internal reporting, bad practices typically get worse, until someone—often motivated by conscience—feels they must notify the press,…

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Trust

BY JEREMY WILLINGER Ethics and trust are inextricably linked. We are interested in ethics in large part because we are concerned, even obsessed, with the question of who we can trust is a world where there is risk and uncertainty. In our relationships, we humans are much more concerned about assessing trustworthiness of others than we are in trying to figure out how ethical they are. So what is trust and what is trustworthiness? The mountain image on right depicts our human situation of uncertainty. Our lives are embedded in human networks where we need to assess trust (see Trust Choice Schematic). The…

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Corporate Culture Assessment

BY ETHICAL SYSTEMS Corporate culture, a rather nebulous psychological construct, is nevertheless part of an organization’s personality. It informs employees—via expectations, standards, prohibitions, and norms, both written and unwritten—how to behave, ultimately driving individual and group-level behavior. This culture is also inherently and deeply linked to ethics, because individual employees tend to act in accordance with the culture which surrounds them, and use culture as a way to determine if their employer deserves their high levels of effort, or if undermining the organization is acceptable. We know what company culture is, and why we care about it, but how do we…

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What really motivates people to be honest in business?

Each year, one in seven large corporations commits fraud. Why? To find out, Alexander Wagner takes us inside the economics, ethics and psychology of doing the right thing. Join him for an introspective journey down the slippery slopes of deception as he helps us understand why people behave the way they do. https://www.ted.com/talks/alexander_wagner_what_really_motivates_people_to_be_honest_in_business?utm_campaign=tedspread&utm_medium=referral&utm_source=tedcomshare This video is shared under a Creative Commons license (BY-NC-ND 4.0). Please visit Ted.com. This TED Talk originally appeared on TED.com in January 2016.

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Employee After-Hours Behavior: Personal or Your Business?

What should employers do when they learn of unsavory activities outside of work? Social media use is sky-high. In 2019, We Are Social reported that there were almost 3.5 billion active social media users worldwide. According to GoodFirms, 98.55% of surveyed users access four or more social media platforms daily, while GlobalWebIndex cites people spending an average of almost 2.5 hours per day on social media. Social media used to be for friends and family. Now, though, the line between personal and public or professional life is blurred. Even if a user uses high privacy settings, they could be tagged,…

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3 Reasons Physical Offices & Face-to-Face Meetings Are Not Going Away

The traditional, physical office is not going away any time soon despite advances in technology allowing people to work remotely, either at a home office, coworking space, virtual office, or another remote location (such as a coffee shop, library, or bookstore). Similarly, face-to-face meetings will not disappear, even though we can use email, phone, text, or virtual conference calls to conduct business meetings. The COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic reignited the debate about remote work, with some suggesting that it will be the new normal even after COVID-19 (Verbeemen & D’Amico, 2020). There are 3 reasons why remote work will not be the new normal and why physical…

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Glassdoor Data Is Revealing the Link Between Culture and Good Business

Former U.S. Vice President Joe Biden elicited some playful teasing when, early in his presidential campaign, he rather quirkily took to quoting Immanuel Kant, the renowned German philosopher. In various venues, he’d paraphrase what Kant, in one formulation, called his “categorical imperative”—to treat people as ends in themselves, never as a means. On the talk show The View, for instance, Biden said, “We have to restore dignity to work. We have to restore dignity to the way we treat people...We treat them like they’re a means to an end.” Andrew Yang, another candidate, has hit the same note in a…

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BBB Better Series: Companies with a conscience

On this episode of Better Series, Rodd Wagner, Forbes Columnist, Author, and Researcher, shares the one must-have all companies need in order to cultivate a happy work culture. Wagner, with no apologies, helps us see that this one spark makes all the difference. Listen in for the details. BBB Better Series: Companies with a conscience Used by kind permission of the Better Business Bureau of Minnesota & North Dakota. Originally broadcast on August 7, 2019.

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BBB Better Series: Your team’s hidden talents

Misti Burmeister, award-winning author, speaker, and entrepreneur shares key areas that inspire leaders and employees to work together toward a common goal. Listen as Misti guides us through how to disrupt the status quo, facilitate difficult conversations, and instigate collaboration, innovation, and growth among our teams. BBB Better Series: Your team's hidden talents Used by kind permission of the Better Business Bureau of Minnesota & North Dakota. Originally broadcast on December 12, 2018.

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