Ethics In Your Business

Share share this

When you buy a business, you look for one that is respected in the community and has good moral values and ethics.  You also want one that has a good history and is making a good profit if it is a for profit business.  Do you want people to look at your business and think it is an ethical company?  Sometimes it is difficult to tell, but the truth will probably come out eventually.

If you don’t believe all businesses are ethical, do you think they started out with the intention of being unethical?  Maybe over the years, greed took over; and profits became so important that values and ethics were pushed aside.  What can you do to insure your values and ethics continue to be important in your business?

As the owner of your business, you need to make it clear that honesty is important and that integrity is valued and rewarded.  These values need to be held by everyone throughout the business.  When your employees are assisting customers or working for them, they are thought of as your business and can be a good influence or a bad influence to customers.  They need to have the same values you have, and you need to make it clear that honesty is important and that integrity is valued and rewarded.  Actions are important as well so that they feel free to anonymously challenge what they think is wrong.

Your values and ethics set the tone for your business.  Obviously, personal upbringing, the organization culture, and the immediate situation all make a difference.  Values are the rules of conduct by which we regulate our behavior.  They are the ‘oughts and shoulds’ of our conscious mind, and we strive to fulfill those values that are central to our character.  Unfortunately, the values in America have changed some over the last fifty years, and these changes have not been good.  Sometimes business owners feel pressured by outside sources to do things or not do things that go against the basic values of which they have always believed.  They sometimes feel they must make a choice of holding on to their values or giving in for fear of losing customers.

What has happened to cause more corrupt behavior in businesses?  One possibility is that the sense of service has diminished dramatically, along with the idea that we should look out for ourselves as number one.  The concern for others seems to be less important.   Another is wanting things immediately and not worrying about the future, the get it now attitude.  People seem more focused on the outcome and not the process, but the experience is important and means do matter.  This me first, get it now, and it doesn’t matter how could be causes of our current corrupt practices, which seem to be widespread and getting worse.

What can you do as one business owner to improve the ethics of your community?  Obviously, you cannot control the values, ethics, and beliefs of your community, your customers, or your employees; but you can be an example for others by living and running your business while staying true to your values and ethics.  A basic cause of problems stems from faulty values, and you can set an example for others. Significant changes are needed in our businesses to help educate and socialize people to have a greater sense of community and integrity. Behavior that reflects honesty and integrity needs to be encouraged and rewarded.  Your business can be an environment where your employees see you as a leader with values and integrity.  Your ethics will be a great example they will want to follow and of which they will want to be a part.  Your integrity, the integrity of your business, and the integrity of your employees will be noticed by your customers and others in your community.  Hold on to your values.

  • Author: Pat Jones
  • Title: President/Owner - Business Broker
  • Company: Pat Jones Business Brokers
  • Company Website:
  • Date: March 30, 2017
  • Category: Buying a Franchise or Business
Share share this