Answer: the one-sentence ethics code.
“I will not lie, cheat, steal, or tolerate those who do.”
As good for a West Point cadet as for any college student or business person.
I discuss in class the five ways in which people will react when faced with an ethical dilemma:
The challenge for managers is to identify the behaviors and events that are symptomatic of these reactions, and to establish that said reactions are their cause.
Ten of the most high-profile chief executives and chief financial officers behind bars in the US and the UK are serving a total of 134 years. The oldest will be an octogenarian when he is released, assuming he serves his full sentence, and the youngest will be 47.
- Bernard Ebbers, WordCom ($11 billion accounting fraud)
- Scott Sullivan, WorldCom ($11 billion accounting fraud)
- Dennis Kozlowski, Tyco International (stole more than $150 million from the company)
Can you tell who the other seven are?
Honor codes, multiple versions of exams and turnitin.com are no “functional substitute” for the one missing ingredient: an internalized sense of honesty.
Many of the world’s national governments have been plagued by charges of corruption and pervasive malfeasance over the past few decades. As a result, a number of international organizations have been created to provide information on corruption and governance trends for the policy community and the general public.
With funding from the World Bank, the Global Integrity organization produces the Global Integrity Report, which features a number of “integrity indicators”, which analyze openness, governance, and anti-corruption mechanisms for a wide range of countries. Visitors to their site can read the Report in its entirety here, and also browse through a number of media resources designed for journalists. Additionally, visitors can also learn more about the organization’s staff members and their various methodologies for compiling reports. (Internet Scout report)
What’s the best way for an employee to blow the whistle on fraud or related infractions? The most popular way seems to be via hotlines or similar reporting tools. According to a joint report from the CSO Executive Council, an organization of corporate and government security executives, and The Network (a hotline provider), almost two-thirds of the nearly 200,000 reports it studied were made via hotlines without first alerting anyone in management. (…)
The study, which tracked incidents at 500 organizations over the past four years, found that 65 percent of the reports were serious enough to warrant investigation, while 46 percent led to some type of action being taken. Corruption and fraud accounted for 10 percent of the incidents, well behind personnel-management situations (51 percent). Company and professional-code violations accounted for 16 percent and employment-law violations 11 percent. (CFO.com)