Raising the Bar: 5 Tips for Developing an Ethical Workplace Culture
TechsPlace | An ethical workplace culture prioritizes tolerance, pay equity, employee rights, diversity, and other fundamentals to ensure fair treatment for all customers and employees. With such a culture, you reap the associated benefits of workplace diversity and tolerance. These advantages include higher retention rates, improved productivity, and increased staff happiness levels.
These are attractive prospects that most business owners would love to experience. However, the crucial first step is to establish a genuinely ethical workplace. If you don’t think you’re quite there yet, here are five tips for setting your business on the right path.
Many employees feel uncomfortable bringing up a potential ethical issue because they fear repercussions. They might worry about the security of their job or the reaction of their manager.
Make strong communication your priority to ensure that all possible ethical-related problems are brought to your attention and rectified. That can involve establishing rapport with your employees, building trust, meeting regularly, and listening to them without judgment.
Set Core Values
All well-established businesses should have core values and guiding principles that help people work together as a team to achieve a common goal. Your business might be unique in all respects, but the core values you set can mirror those of others – think loyalty, respect, accountability, and honesty.
Your core values don’t need to be entirely unique, but they should relate to the experiences and daily operations of your business. For example, ‘sustainability’ perhaps wouldn’t be the most accurate core value for companies in the oil and gas drilling industry.
Work By Your Core Values
Developing an ethical workplace culture involves more than setting core values. It’s about everything within your business operating around them. So ensure your core values feature heavily in daily tasks and send frequent reminders to employees to keep them involved.
For example, if your core value is to minimize your negative environmental impact, you’d be working by these values when you swap the single-use coffee cups and plastic products in your staff room for reusable alternatives.
Connect with Other Ethical Businesses
Businesses rarely operate independently. Instead, they rely on a network of other companies to provide goods and services that help them do their job to a high standard. Ensure that any companies you work with prioritize ethics as much as you do.
For example, you might align yourself with an inclusive employment recruiter if you’re trying to fill gaps in your workforce rather than a traditional recruiter who might not value inclusivity and diversity in the same way.
Reward Your Team
HR departments can be so busy tackling bad behaviour that they forget to highlight and celebrate good conduct. Something as simple as providing positive feedback, offering perks like a shorter workday, and acknowledging a job well done in passing might have more of an impact than you think.
When ethics is rewarded and highlighted in a workplace, employees feel more empowered to succeed and move up the ranks. If they end up in leadership positions themselves, they’ll be in a strong position to continue their efforts to create a much more ethical workplace environment.
Developing an ethical workplace culture won’t happen overnight, nor will it happen if your entire team isn’t on board. Start by creating core values, working by them, and prioritizing communication, rewards, and ethical business relationships. It would help if you then were on the path to being recognized as a business that stands for fairness and equality.