Professionalism and ethical behavior in the workplace can benefit your career and improve your working environment. Understanding examples of professional and ethical behavior can help you to develop your own effective work habits. Be conscious of how you treat co-workers and your workplace attitude and you can improve your productivity and effectiveness.
Business meetings are regular occurrences in the corporate world, and by following meeting etiquette you can improve your professional image. Be prepared to contribute to the meeting by reviewing the agenda in advance and arrive on time. Recognize each speaker that has the floor and do not try to talk over someone else. Be respectful of the meeting chairperson and follow the format of the meeting, which would include using the proper times to ask questions.
Ethical treatment of your co-workers and managers means being respectful of the need for efficient and accurate communication. Follow the instructions on company memos and ask questions only after you have thoroughly read the information. Asking questions about information that is clearly marked on company correspondence is unprofessional and presents the image of someone who does not follow instructions. Refrain from repeating office gossip, as helping to spread false or demeaning information regarding a co-worker is considered unethical.
Be early to work so that you can settle into your job duties, say hello to co-workers and get coffee before your shift is scheduled to start. Follow the lunch and break schedules by leaving when you are scheduled and returning on time. Check out and in when you leave for breaks and lunch. Before beginning your day, check your work schedule so that you know where you have to be and at what time.
It is the responsibility of each employee to report suspicious people in the office or misconduct committed by company employees. Company policies are designed to create a safe workplace. By reporting violations of company policy, you are doing your part to maintain a high standard of ethics in your office that will keep employees and visitors safe. For example, fire exits that are not properly maintained should be reported immediately for repair. Employees that do not follow the regulations in regard to proper disposal of cigarettes in the break area could be causing a fire hazard and that should be brought to the attention of management.
About the Author
George N. Root III began writing professionally in 1985. His publishing credits include a weekly column in the "Lockport Union Sun and Journal" along with the "Spectrum," the "Niagara Falls Gazette," "Tonawanda News," "Watertown Daily News" and the "Buffalo News." Root has a Bachelor of Arts in English from the State University of New York, Buffalo.
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Whether you are an employee, a manager or a company executive, how you do business matters to the larger community. Ethical business practices aren't just an example of selfless do-goodism, they are essential for sustainable growth, increased employee productivity and reliable investment in your business. In short, ethics plays a large role in individual and communal corporate success.
Ethics and Public Relations
More and more companies are turning to corporate social responsibility programs or charity work to improve their image, according to the Ethics Resource Center. The main reason they engage in such activities is because the perception that a company is corrupt or unethical can lead to public relations nightmares. You and your company succeed when you project an ethical face to the world. A company or employee known for double-dealing or unethical practices suffers in today's market. Companies with good reputations, on the other hand, succeed.
Ethics and Employee Productivity
According to the Better Business Bureau, 36 percent of employees in a recent survey said that they had become distracted at the office by incidences of poor ethics in the workplace. Not only are unethical practices wrong in the objective sense, but they impact company success when employees are unable to focus on their work because of unethical behavior or company practices. Better ethics result in employees with better focus, thus improving the company's productivity and bottom line.
Ethics and Investment
While investors are primarily concerned with the company's bottom line, they are also concerned with a firm's long-term profitability. Unethical behavior is not a long-term strategy. While unethical dealings may be covered up in the short term, when they are discovered, stock prices plummet and financial peril looms. By promoting ethics in a company's operations, managers and employees are creating an environment friendly to long-term investment and, thus, corporate success.
Ethics and Employee Retention
Employees stay longer and produce better results than those disturbed by their employer's shady behavior, according to research done by the Ethics Resource Center. According to these findings, unethical companies have a difficult time retaining workers. A high turnover rate eats up a company's budget and time, both of which impact business success. On an individual level, being an ethical employee enhances your chances of keeping your job.
About the Author
Michael Batton Kaput began writing professionally in 2009. He is an editor at two magazines and a freelance writer. He has been published in "Egypt Today," Egypt's leading current affairs magazine, and "Business Today Egypt," Egypt's number one English-language business magazine. He attended Denison University where he earned a degree in political science and English literature.
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