Running a business requires adequate consideration to a number of issues outside the traditional scope of making money, of which ethics is most certainly one. As our business grows and becomes more significant, we impact on the lives and circumstances of people in ways we can only imagine - through bringing jobs, creating wealth and inspiring others to grow their businesses. An important part of engaging in this process is understanding your business ethics, which if not up to scratch can leave you with a bad reputation and can even ruin your business, not to mention alienating employees, suppliers and the local community.
Ethics is something of a subjective topic, but it is nevertheless of immense importance across all areas of business. From the way in which sales and marketing is handled through to product development and customer service, and even to some extent finance, ethics has a significant role to play in ensuring business success and ultimately living up to the corporate social responsibility. Thus adopting a ethics-specific approach to doing business is critical towards ensuring a legitimate business model with long term potential.
Business ethics is especially important in dealing with customers. Maintaining integrity in the customer facing side of your business is crucial to building client relationships, to assisting the overall branding efforts. Likewise, it's an important step in minimising returns and protecting business goodwill, which will have a tangible effect on the success or otherwise of your business.
Ethics wise, it's also important to consider how you deal with customer issues and customer service. While some businesses are prepared to sacrifice customer service for pound signs, there is not only a sensible business reason for providing adequate support but also strong ethics and moral reasons for providing help and assistance to your customer base.
On the administrative and strategic side of your business, it's also important to adopt an ethical approach which takes account of your various responsibilities as a business - to shareholders, employees and the community at large. Embracing these concepts of ethics as part of the way you do business is vital to ensuring your run an honest, successful business with the potential to grow and develop over time, and is one way of ensuring that you develop relationships across all aspects of your business that are conducive to success and profitability over the long term.
Ethics is no doubt an important business subject for any entrepreneur to study, but it also has a wider application throughout organisations. One man's concept of what is ethical and for the best may be completely different from another man's concept, and so it's important to establish a collective set of ethics that represent the entire organisation rather than just adopting a piecemeal approach. This can be installed through training, through creating business policies and even through careful selection at the HR stage, although it's important that there are also enforcement mechanisms within the business concerned, and that ethics remain a forefront consideration in day-to-day trade to ensure a unified, morally sound approach to doing business.
The Importance Of Business Ethics
By Katrina Polder
Business ethics concerns itself with the choices exercised by the people in organizations in terms of decisions and actions. Some choices are considered to be good and some are not. But there are no standard definitions. A lot of the choice depends on the perspective of what is good for the business and from whose point of view. One common earlier point of view is that what is good for the owners or for the shareholders is good for the business. All economically profitable actions and decisions are considered to be good in this perspective. All organizational behavior of the individuals and groups is oriented in such...
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