A safe and trusted partner - why corporate conduct matters
Not a day goes by without news headlines about a company failing to live up to good corporate conduct expectations. What used to be acceptable conduct some years ago is today scrutinised and criticised by the media, social interest groups, and by shareholders. The trust in companies and their managers is put to test.
AUTHOR: ANNA ROMBERG
Some years ago managers used to be treated with trips to luxurious resorts in the Alps or bear hunting trips in Siberia by their suppliers. And when it got ‘challenging’ to solve ‘local permits and red tape’ those issues could easily be solved by hiring a ‘consultant’ or ‘local partner’. As long as the dirty money was not in the company’s own books it could not be their problem, right?
I have not encountered any western global company that would not have a Code of Conduct. Any company that aspires to do business on a global scale warrants their good values, zero tolerance for corruption and unethical conduct and say that they are a safe and trusted partner. These things are easy to say, but it takes an immense amount of work, top management commitment, resources, and a willingness to say no, to actually implement this in practice.
At Cargotec we believe in consistent and dedicated enforcement of our Code of Conduct. I know that it is hard work and I know that our industry and many of the 100 + countries where we do business have its own share of challenges. But there are no shortcuts - only by facing up to these challenges, with being transparent with the dilemmas and by having the courage to say no when a deal does not fulfill our criterias will the Code of Conduct become a reality and a way of doing business, for real.
I believe that this is the only way to do business, long term. By securing ethics and compliance, which means practical implementation of our values and standards, Cargotec will be a safe company to do business with, a safe company to work for and a safe and long term investment. In this way we can advance a level playing field where companies compete based on merit, products and pricing - in the best interest of our customers, employees, shareholders and societies where we operate.
How do you enforce your Code of Conduct?
Is it only lipservice and perhaps an annual e-learning or is there real action behind the words? Do you allow for open discussion of the dilemmas and is there a willingness to say no to business and part ways with a highly performing sales manager that has not acted in line with the company values? Do you have processes for monitoring and measuring how well the program actually is working? Join the discussion and write your thoughts on the comments section below.