Why worry about business ethics?

Many people don’t see the financial reward for having strong business ethics. Why give up that extra $200 a month in bogus business travel expenses? The company doesn’t need it and you do. Why not inflate your sales report for the year? It could mean a promotion.

In fact, there are several ways that ethical behavior can make your company money.

Customers choose ethics.

Customers will base their decision whether or not to buy from you partially on ethics.

Think of it this way. If you had to choose between two car dealers, one with a reputation for selling stolen vehicles and one with a reputation for making sure the customer gets all the information about a vehicle’s past, which would you choose?

Customers appreciate business ethics.

Suppose you have purchased a television from a local electronics store. The company calls her back the next day to say that she really did overpay for the TV and they mailed her a check for the overcharged amount. You would probably be dumbfounded. Who admits their mistakes, especially when it costs them money? But the next time he wanted to make an electronics purchase, he would probably remember that incident and return to that store. Customers reward ethical companies with loyalty.

Employees are more loyal to an ethical company.

If you work for a company that lies, cheats and steals, you probably think the company will do the same to you and you will probably be less loyal to them have a result

Ethical companies are more productive.

At one time or another, most of us have taken a sick day when we’re not actually sick. This is, in essence, lying and stealing from the company. (Yes, sick days are a benefit of being an employee, but they cost the company money and should be used wisely.) Studies have shown that employees in ethical offices take less time off and are more productive when they’re in the office (probably because they’re not gossiping or doing other unethical things!).

An ethical office means lower legal costs.

If your employees have a habit of lying, cheating and stealing, someone is going to get caught eventually and likely it will mean a huge legal headache (and a huge bill) for the company. Nipping unethical behavior in the bud can reduce your chances of a lawsuit.

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