We hear and read about “Codes of Ethics.” Far less about the indispensable “Codes of Integrity.” Yet, it is Integrity that is the first great element. And, it has no down side. It cannot be over emphasized. Here is a model from which you can mold a Code of Integrity for your organization. All you stand to gain is a magnified, stronger, more competitive organization.
MODEL FOR A CODE OF INTEGRITY
We, the staff and personnel of (name of organization), adopt this Code as our commitment to conduct with integrity in all our affairs, work related and otherwise. We shall adhere to its words and spirit, confident they will lead us to the right decisions, at the right time, for the right reasons—irrespective of the inconvenience or difficulty.
No document can cover every problem and predicament. However, with fidelity to this Code we can make choices that are consistent with our commitments.
Therefore, we hold and affirm:
1. Integrity means upholding ideas, standards, values—including our products and services—that withstand scrutiny; that are beneficial to those directly involved;
2. Performance with integrity leads to trustworthiness and reputation; on each we place supreme importance;
3. We promote a culture of integrity by assuming full responsibility for our words and actions;
4. Our word is our bond. We keep it in matters great and small. We stand accountable for our achievements as well as mistakes;
5. We strive to deliver our products and services—as promised, when promised, in the manner promised;
6. HOW we perform is equally as important as WHAT we perform. Thus, we decline to cut corners or play fast and loose with rules, regulations, and proven policies;
7. When problems arise, we avoid expediency and rely upon the tried and true;
8. We stand by the proposition that loyalty ends when integrity is jeopardized;
9. We hold fast to the truth, regardless of the consequences. We practice scrupulous honesty, knowing that upright conduct spreads beneficial influence among all concerned.
When in doubt we shall pause, reflect, use our best judgment, and allow the foregoing to direct us on the proper course.
Tuesday, June 11, 2013