Understanding why is ethics important in business today!
Traditionally, the absolute essence of every business has always been to generate a profit. Simply sell a product or service to people who are in need of it, sell it at a price greater than the cost incurred by you and make a profit. Not too many businesses have spent much time wondering about the values, ethics or morals that the business stands for. Not many businesses have asked themselves, “Why is ethics important in business and what are the ethics that our business stands for?“.
However, digital age is forcing businesses to be much more ethical than ever before. Here are a few reasons, why I think business ethics are vitally important today:
1. Thanks to technology, the world is very tightly connected today (in-fact, it appears as if the world has almost shrunk in size, no?). Technologies such as the Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and other Social Media have brought so many people together Internationally, almost making it a world with no boundaries.
2. Since information is easily and readily available, most of the people today are very well informed (as compared to a few decades ago). This rise in awareness has made people more intuitive and vocal about what is appropriate and what is not. Good as well as bad reviews and comments about products and services can go around the world in a few minutes, thereby enhancing or damaging your business branding appropriately.
3. Your digital footprints are everywhere. Websites such as Yelp.com have very active members who are constantly adding good reviews or bad reviews for almost all products and services. Almost nothing goes unnoticed from the public eye these days. Statistics reveal that these reviews greatly affect the consumer buying behavior and good or bad reviews do actually contribute to an increase or decrease in sales.
4. For almost everything under the sun, there are innumerable other review sites on the Internet today. Also, there are countless independent bloggers writing articles and reviews about almost everything.
5.In a nutshell, we live in an age of Instant Karma. Do good and good shall come back; do bad and bad shall come back, is precisely how the world operates today.
Best Practices: Considering this, here are a few key business ethics that every business today must strive to inculcate and stand by:
- Honesty and Integrity: People like to work with businesses that demonstrate honesty and transparency in their transactions and integrity in their words and actions. Aim to be a business people can trust and love to associate with.
- Seek feedback: Have processes in place to seek feedback from your employees, partners and most importantly, customers. Use these feedbacks to understand your strengths and improvement areas better.
- Know your values: List down your core values around which you intend to build your business and serve your customers better.
- Honor your commitments: Do everything in your power to honor your commitments and fulfill all your obligations.
- Be Respectful: And finally, treat others with utmost respect, always.