Monday, January 30, 2006

Imposing Values

Ethical Corp are hosting an upcoming event entitled "2006 Focus: Ethical leadership in practice. How to get everyone in your organisation to implement your ethical values." Which of course begs the questions:

  • Can you actually impose values on others (even your staff)?

  • Should the process not involve a period of consultation in which you discover the shared values of your staff (/others) before jointly developing organisational values as a whole?

  • How to balance the above with strong leadership?
Consulting staff is likely to have the positive benefit of having employees actually buy in to value sets and associated initiatves, rather than presenting a 'corporate guideline' to follow of which staff can become resentful (and often mocking). One of the conference topics is 'Your employees: your greatest CSR advocates'. In order to advocate something you have to believe in it, and being told to believe something is something you just can't do.

Throughout this process it may be that you discover that your (i.e. The Board's) and certain members of your staff's values are at odds, but the question is then, should you be working together at all?

In addition to all this, asking stakeholders for their opinion might actually throw up one or two good ideas you haven't come up with yet!

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