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In this Digital Age, Are You Ready for Digital Reinvention?

31 Oct

“All you need is your own imagination
So use it that’s what it’s for (that’s what it’s for)
Go inside, for your finest inspiration
Your dreams will open the door (open up the door)” Madonna

Madonna is a perfect example of reinvention. A very versatile actress, Madonna has the ability to adapt to new trends; someone that can send a lesson to companies struggling with their own digital revolution.

In this digital age, change is rewarded while being static is being punished. Companies must be open to radical reinvention to find new, significant, and sustainable sources of revenue.  Incremental adjustments or building something new outside of the core business can provide real benefits and, in many cases, are a crucial first step for a digital transformation. But if these initiatives do not lead to more profound changes to the core business and avoid the real work of re-architecting how the business makes money, the benefits can be fleeting ad too insignificant to avert a steady march to oblivion.

Discovering Digital Reinvention

Reinvention is a rethinking of the business itself.  Based on a Digital Quotient Research, reinvention requires significant commitment. First, the investment must be aligned closely with strategy at a sufficient scale. And second, digital leaders must have a high threshold for risk and must be willing to make bold decisions.

Digital Reinvention is not a throw-it-all-out approach. If you look at Apple when it moved from a computer manufacturer to music and lifestyle brand, it has reinvented itself while continuing to build computers.  Likewise, this is the case with John Deere.  John Deere is the brand name of Deere & Company that manufactures agricultural, construction, forestry machinery, and others. It continued to sell tractors and farm equipment while reinventing itself into a creator of online services for farmers.

Digital Reinvention is an innovative approach to laying the foundation for future growth while continually pushing improvement targets.

Approaching Digital Reinvention

Digital Reinvention will put new demands on leadership. Hence, an organization must have a strategic approach to Digital Reinvention: The 4Ds of Digital Reinvention.

  1. Discover. The primary goal of Discover is to develop a tight business case for change based on facts. Organizations must discover what your digital vision is based on where the value is. This will shape your digital ambition, strategy, and business case.
  2. Design. Designing, creating, and prototyping breakthrough experiences is the main focus of Design. It is reinventing and developing new capabilities and breakthrough Customer Journeys.
  3. Deliver. This is the third phase where organizations need to gather speed and scale necessary for reinvention. Its primary focus is to deliver and develop a network of partners who can rapidly scale your ambition. There is a need to activate an ecosystem to rapidly deliver at scale.
  4. De-risk. The 4th D, it is focused on structuring the change program, resources, and commercial model to reduce operational and financial risk. It is essential for senior leaders to focus on structural and organizational issues that can hamper the organization’s ability to manage cyber risk.

Having a good handle of the 4Ds of Digital Reinvention will prepare leaders towards Digital Transformation and new challenges.  It will be able to come up with the right answers to key questions that will arise in preparation for Digital Reinvention. Coming up with the proper answers to these crucial questions can guide companies to reinvent themselves ad stay in the game.

Interested in gaining more understanding of Digital Reinvention? You can learn more and download an editable PowerPoint about Digital Reinvention here on the Flevy documents marketplace.

Are you a management consultant?

You can download this and hundreds of other consulting frameworks and consulting training guides from the FlevyPro library.

Finding Corporate Philanthropy a Challenge? Let This Primer Guide You

29 Oct

“To give away money is an easy matter and in any man’s power. But to decide to whom to give it and how large and when, and for what purpose and how, is neither in every man’s power nor an easy matter.” Aristotle

Corporations can be a source of grant funding. Corporations and local businesses donate grants because they care about some particular issue or issues to the point of wanting to get involved. They have the financial capacity and they want to contribute to the community or society and see positive outcomes.  Oftentimes, these efforts will be aligned with their Corporate Social Responsibility programs.

Corporate grant programs sponsored by large, multinational corporations may look identical to the grant programs run by foundations. This includes a formal application process and well-defined programmatic areas. Other companies choose to limit their giving to a handful of local nonprofits with support consisting of one-time cash gifts or in-kind donations of goods or services.

Organizing Corporate Giving Programs require serious study and consideration. Companies have to properly define their objectives and the reasons why it plans to come up with giving programs. Setting up a Grant Funding Program requires having sufficient understanding, knowledge, and systems in place to make it run successfully.

Corporate Philanthropy: Taking the Right Journey

Corporate Philanthropy is the act of corporation in promoting the welfare of communities through charitable donations of funds or time. Corporations must be clear on what type of support it will offer and the ways of promoting these programs. When this is done, it is most effective for the company to establish its Corporate Giving Program and set the right direction for its Corporate Philanthropic Journey.

Having a good understanding of the types of Corporate Philanthropy can better guide corporations to take a good start in its Corporate Philanthropic Journey. Corporations can have a choice of whether they provide cash gifts, non-cash or donations of goods and services.

Either way, corporations initiate giving programs to achieve specific objectives and reasons. Corporations differ from foundations. Foundations make grants to further a mission that has a social good at its heart. On the other, corporate donors make gifts to complement or advance business interests.

Jumpstarting the Corporate Philanthropic Journey

Every corporation dedicated to undertaking its Corporate Philanthropic Journey wants to give it a good start. Hence, it is important for corporations to engage in various ways to promote its Corporate Giving Programs. Creating awareness is essentially important as it creates interest from target beneficiaries and moves them to action.

Corporate Giving Programs can also be promoted through partnerships and collaborations. It is a tactical way of directly informing target proponents of the company’s Corporate Giving Program.

Creating awareness of the Company’s Corporate Giving Programs can be achieved using six strategic approaches.

Interested in gaining more understanding of Corporate Philanthropy? You can learn more and download an editable PowerPoint about Corporate Philanthropy Primer here on the Flevy documents marketplace.

Are you a management consultant?

You can download this and hundreds of other consulting frameworks and consulting training guides from the FlevyPro library.

How to Achieve GREATER VALUE in M&A? Do the Fundamentals of Post-merger Integration

28 Oct

Going into a Merger and Acquisition (M&A) is never an easy task. The process of M&A is like trying to complete a large puzzle when your right hand and your left hand have never worked together. In fact, Mergers and Acquisitions revolve around a plethora of moving parts. Going into this direction can be complicated. Suddenly, there are two companies and additional stakeholders that now need to fairly and seamlessly work and communicate together in order to bring the deal to completion.

But what happens after the deal has seemingly crossed the finish line. When this happens, there is the Post Merger Integration or M&A Integration. After the financial transaction, Post-merger Integration (PMI) is the process of bringing 2 or more companies together with the aim of maximizing synergies to ensure that the deal lives up to its predicted value. However, easy as it may seem, there are problems in Mergers and Acquisitions that can often cause deals to fail. Companies do not want a deal that only looks good on paper or results in a semi-integrated company.

To be able to live up to predicted value, a Post-merger Integration Planning must start right at the beginning of the deal.

Understanding Post-merger Integration

Post-merger Integration (PMI) or M&A Integration is the process of bringing 2 or more companies together.
It is what happens after the deal has crossed the finish line. In the PMI, our objective is to maximize synergies to ensure that the deal lives up to its predicted value.

In starting the PMI, Post-merger Planning should be done at the beginning of the deal and must be established before the deal closes. Any problems that may arise in Mergers and Acquisitions must be dealt with immediately since failure to properly address them can cause deals to fail or unable to extract true value from deals.

The 4 Types of Post Acquisition Integration

It helps a lot if we have a good understanding of the different types of Post Acquisition Integration to better manage deals.

Understanding the different types of Post Acquisition Integration will give the organization a better idea of what direction to take when it comes to Mergers and Acquisitions. It is best for companies to have a good hold of where they want to go and want to achieve taking into consideration current conditions and business considerations. When these are all laid out, greater are the chances that the right type of Post Acquisition Integration is undertaken.

Taking the Right Step Forward to Mergers and Acquisitions

Taking the road to Mergers and Acquisitions requires organizations to keep away from common mistakes. This is possible with the use of M&A Integrated Solutions.

The use of M&A Integrated Solutions and Post-merger Integration Tool allows organizations to increase the chance of a successful Post-merger Integration. With the use of these tools, users are enabled to plan properly from day one and the very beginning of the diligence process. Teams have access to all files and data prior to the deal closing to spot areas of concern and plan accordingly. Further, users can set cross-stream dependencies across multiple functions.

With M&A Integrated Solutions, it facilitates the use of a better process that maximizes deal value. Organizations just need to have a good understanding of the Post-merger (M & A) Integration Process to get the greatest value.

Interested in gaining more understanding of Post-merger Integration? You can learn more and download an editable PowerPoint about Post-merger Integration (PMI) Primer here on the Flevy documents marketplace.

Are you a management consultant?

You can download this and hundreds of other consulting frameworks and consulting training guides from the FlevyPro library.

When Sustaining Stakeholder Interest Is Essential: The Importance of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Sources of Value

25 Oct

Companies face increasing pressure from governments, competitors, and employees to play a leading role in addressing a wide array of environmental, social, and governance issues in a company’s supply chain. It could range from climate change to obesity to human rights.

For the past 30 years, companies have responded by developing corporate social responsibility or sustainability initiatives to fulfill their contract with society by addressing these issues.

However, gathering the data needed to justify sustained, strategic investment in programs can be difficult.  Yet, without this information, executives and investors often see programs as separate from a company’s core business or unrelated to its shareholder value. While there are companies that have made progress tracking operational metrics or social indicators, they have difficulty linking such metrics and indicators to a real financial impact.

Needless to say, there are companies that are creating great value through environmental, social, and governance activities.  Increased sales, decreased costs, and reduced risks are being achieved.  Environmental, social, and governance programs can create value in many other ways. We just need to know where and how.

What is Corporate Social Responsibility

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) or sustainability initiatives are undertaken to fulfill contracts with society to respond to environmental issues. Environmental, social, and governance refer to a broader set of CSR Programs.

Sustaining strategic investments in CSR Programs can be a challenge but there are already leading companies that are generating real value through environmental, social, and governance activities.

The Dynamic Ways of Creating Value

CSR Programs can create shareholder value. It is just important that companies must broaden their legitimacy in societies where they operate.

  1. Growth. As a source of value, Growth can be expressed in terms of New Markets, New Products, New Customers, Market Share, and Innovation. When this is created, it can deliver higher brand loyalty, reputation, and goodwill with stakeholders.
  2. Return on Invested Capital (ROIC). ROIC is generated when there is operational efficiency and workforce efficiency. When this is achieved, it can result in better workforce skills and increased productivity through participation in ESG activities.
  3. Risk Management. Risk Management is a source of value. It can be achieved when risk is lowered when compliance with regulatory requirements are achieved.  Public support is achieved and the ability of your company to secure consistent, long-term, and sustainable access to safe, high-quality raw materials and products are established.
  4. Management Excellence. Management Excellence can have an impact on leadership development, adaptability, and long-term strategic view. These are 3 key areas that investors consider most important when evaluating potential partnerships.  With Management Excellence, a value can be generated from these areas.

A Look at IBM: A Clear Example of CSR as a Source of Value

IBM has been recognized globally as one of the leading companies when it comes to Information Technology.  In creating new markets, IBM used Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) Toolkit to develop a track record with local stakeholders, including local governments and NGOs.  Free web-based resources on business management were provided to SMEs in developing economies. A total of 30 SME Toolkit sites were developed in 16 languages.

As a result of this initiative, IBM’s reputation and relationships in new markets improved.   Likewise, the relationship with companies that are potential customers was developed.  The strategic approach of IBM in creating markets through its CSR has provided IBM much value in creating and developing relationships which are essential in new markets.

Interested in gaining more understanding of sources of value to CSR programs? You can learn more and download an editable PowerPoint about Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR): Sources of Value here on the Flevy documents marketplace.

Are you a management consultant?

You can download this and hundreds of other consulting frameworks and consulting training guides from the FlevyPro library.

Why PLUS Decision Making Model is Essential to Ethical Organizations

23 Oct

Organizations struggle to develop a simple set of guidelines that makes it easier for employees, regardless of position or level, to be confident of their decisions to meet competing standards of organizations for effective and ethical decision making.

The traditional decision making model taught in most business ethics programs is often beyond the reading comprehension of 25% of the employees’ population. Hence, an alternative model is necessary.

Employees are called upon to make decisions in the normal course of their job. Organizations cannot function effectively if employees are not empowered to make decisions consistent with their positions and responsibilities.

Further, the decision maker has to be confident in the soundness of his decisions. Every decision should be tested against the organization’s policies and values, applicable laws and regulations, as well as the individual employee’s definition of what is right, fair, good, and acceptable.

With these realities, an alternative decision-making model is imperative to address current realities.

The Rise of the Ethical Decision Making Model

To become an Ethical Organization, having a decision making model grounded on foundational ethical decision making is paramount.  An Ethical Decision Making Model ensures that the ethical issues inherent in a routine business situation could effectively be surfaced while making it easy for people in the organization to understand and use. To make it more effective, PLUS filters must be embedded within the process.

The ethical component of the decision making takes the form of a set of filters. At key steps in the process, considerations are run through the filters and separate the ethical conations from the remainder of the decision.

The PLUS Filters: What Really Are They?

PLUS Filters are ethics filters that have adapted to mnemonic word PLUS. PLUS is the mnemonic of Policies, Legal, Universal, and Self. The integration of PLUS Filters in the decision making process is best achieved when there are effective communication and formal mechanism in place.

The PLUS Filters are applied in each of the steps in the decision making process.

P = Policies

  • Is it consistent with my organization’s policies, procedures, and guidelines?

L = Legal

  • Is it acceptable under the applicable laws and regulations?

U = Universal

  • Does it conform to the universal principles/values my organization has adopted?

S = Self

  • Does it satisfy my personal definition of right, good, and fair?

The PLUS Filters and Its Application

Integration of PLUS Filters in decision making is best achieved with effective communication and formal mechanism in place.

Let us look at the first step: Defining the Problem.

In defining the problem, we aim to define the difference between the expected and/or desired outcomes and actual outcomes. With the PLUS application, PLUS surfaced the ethical issues and ask the question, “Does the existing situation violate any of the PLUS considerations?”

When the PLUS Filters are applied, this determines if the ethical components of the decision are being surfaced or satisfied.

The use of PLUS Filters in the decision making process can be your barometer in determining if decisions made are within accepted ethical boundaries agreed upon by your company and the environment that the company revolves in.

Interested in gaining more understanding of creating an Ethical Organization through the PLUS Decision Making Model? You can learn more and download an editable PowerPoint about Ethical Organization: PLUS Decision Making Model here on the Flevy documents marketplace.

Are you a management consultant?

You can download this and hundreds of other consulting frameworks and consulting training guides from the FlevyPro library.

When You Need the Best Coffee to Spark Dialogue: Consulting Workshop Series: World Café

21 Oct

In today’s business environment, management consulting firms must be ready to address client challenges and needs that will transform their business by 10 or 100 times. Tools and methods must be scaled up to ensure applicability to the widest possible audience globally.

The Consulting Workshop Series provides a good understanding of the 10 Methods of conducting Workshops that are custom designed to fit specific workshop objectives. Different methods are developed for the purpose of providing organizations the most appropriate tool necessary to support organizations to achieve their strategic goals and targets.

If it is the management’s goal to facilitate collaborative dialogue and the sharing of knowledge and ideas to create a living network of conversation and action, then the World Cafe is the perfect method to undertake.

Discovering World Café

World Café is a creative process for facilitating collaborative dialogue and the sharing of knowledge and ideas to create a living network of conversation and action. Its primary objective is for ideation and to share ideas.

World Café is a simple, effective, and flexible format for hosting large group dialogue. By using World Café, organizations can plan meetings and gatherings where a unique environment is created with surprising and useful outcomes occurring.

In a nutshell, World Café is a process of helping people to remember what they already know how to do: to convene conversations that matter.

The Approach to World Café

World Café can easily be organized as it just needs one person to put all preparations together: the Café Facilitator.

  1. Preparation. As in every event, preparation is the most critical. In World Café, everything hinges on Café Facilitator. Hence, it is important that enough time is spent in the selection of Café Facilitator. A Café Facilitator sees to it that the guidelines for dialogue and engagement are put into action. He/she is responsible in so many ways. There is a need to work with the Planning Team to determine the purpose of the Café, the name of the Café, and framing the invitations. When everything is organized, the Café Facilitator is the one in charge in posing the questions or themes for rounds of conversation and make sure that the question is visible to everyone on the overhead, flipchart, or on cards at each table.  Playing a vital role in World Café preparation and actual event, the Café Facilitator can make the difference between an interesting conversation and a breakthrough thinking.
  2.  The World Café Event. This is your main event. The World Café is focused on facilitating collaborative dialogue. Conducted in several rounds, it makes sure that sufficient ideas are generated and shared.

The application of World Café is so vast in terms of use. It is very useful when there is a need to engage large groups in an authentic dialogue process. When we need to generate input, share knowledge, stimulate innovation thinking, and explore action possibilities around real-life issues and questions, World Café is the most suitable amongst various methods in the Consulting Workshop Series.
World Café can even deepen relationships and mutual ownership of outcomes in an existing group. It can create meaningful interaction between a speaker and the audience. In fact, it can effectively engage people in authentic conversation whether they are meeting for the first time or have established relationships with each other.

Like any other approaches and methods, World Café is also most suitable for specific conditions and less in selected conditions. When you are already driving toward an already determined solution or answer, World Café may not be one for you.

Interested in gaining more understanding of the World Café workshop technique? You can learn more and download an editable PowerPoint about Consulting Workshop Series: World Cafe here on the Flevy documents marketplace.

Are you a management consultant?

You can download this and hundreds of other consulting frameworks and consulting training guides from the FlevyPro library.

When Critical Situations Call for a 911 Rescue: The 10 First Steps to Crisis Management

18 Oct

Never before has Crisis Management been considered important.  With businesses being exposed to a disruptive environment, the emphasis on Crisis Management has never been more profound.

“The secret of Crisis Management is not good vs. bad, it’s preventing the bad from getting worse.”- Andy Gilman of Comm Core Consulting Group

An organization is considered to be undergoing a crisis when there is a sudden and unexpected event leading to major unrest amongst the individuals at the workplace.  It is an emergency situation which disturbs the employees as well as leads to the instability of the organization.  When this occurs, organizations are expected to have critical documentation and process, e.g. Crisis Management Plan, Disaster Recovery Plan, Business Continuity Plan, etc., in place.

Crisis Management is the art of dealing with these sudden and unexpected events which disturb the employees and organization. Yet, often companies are like the metaphorical frog that doesn’t notice the water it is in is warming up until it is too late.  There are managers who either do not realize that they are in a crisis or their crisis situation is worsening.  The early signs of distress are often missed.  While they are not bad managers, these are managers that are under a set of paradigms that no longer apply and just let the power of inertia carry them along.

As a result, organizations in crisis find themselves faced with a potential cost that is greatly significant.  This can lead to longer recovery time, a direct impact on downtime, and lost revenue.

First Things First: Taking a Good Handle of Crisis Management

Crisis Management is the application of strategies to enable organizations to deal with a disruptive and unexpected event that threatens to harm the organization or its stakeholders. It is a situation-based management system with clear roles, responsibilities, and processes. In Crisis Management, it requires a crisis mindset. A crisis mindset is the ability to think of the worst-case scenario while simultaneously suggesting numerous solutions.

Being well prepared for a crisis is the epitome of Crisis Management. It ensures rapid and adequate response to a crisis and maintaining clear lines of reporting and communication in the event of crisis.

Yet, often the organization and communication involved in responding to a crisis in a timely fashion provide the most challenge to business. Responding to crisis in the most effective way can be done by taking the 10 First Steps.

The 10 First Steps to Crisis Management

The 10 strategic First Steps are the organization’s guide when in crisis and there is a strong call toward initiating organizational change.

The first 4 steps focus on Culture and Leadership.

  1. Establish a Wide Perception of Distress
  2. Establish a Crisis Mindset
  3. Activate the Board as a Crisis Detector
  4. Change Top-Team Members

The first 4 steps will widen one’s understanding of distress and move people to actions at the time of crisis. It is at this stage that the Board will be empowered to see the forest for the trees and can enable organizations to focus on tough movers that can successfully make organizational changes.

The 5th step focuses on Change Management.

  1. Communicate a Great Changed Story

Communicating a Great Changed Story can create positive motivation to spur action towards change. When Change Management starts evolving, the organization is now ready to advance towards Business Transformation.

The 6th to 9th steps focus on Business Transformation.

  1. Integrate Trigger Points
  2. Have a Strong Cash Position
  3. Focus on Quick Wins
  4. Make Target-focused Incentive Plans

Business Transformation starts when trigger points are integrated and a strong cash position is maintained. Management can focus on quick wins to create a trajectory effect to spur actions and develop target-focused Incentive Plans to achieve a successful turnaround.

The 10th and final step is sustaining the gains through effective Talent Strategy.

  1. Retain your Talent

The final step is Retaining your Talent. It is recognizing those that can make a difference and finding the next level of talent that can create and sustain change.

Organizations can build its Crisis Management capability following the 10 first steps.  Crisis Management is not anymore a matter of choice; it has become a necessity.

Interested in gaining more understanding of the first 10 steps to surviving a crisis?  You can learn more and download an editable PowerPoint about Crisis Management: 10 First Steps here on the Flevy documents marketplace.

Are you a management consultant?

You can download this and hundreds of other consulting frameworks and consulting training guides from the FlevyPro library.

Scenario Planning: A Workshop Consulting Approach When the Future Needs to be Different

18 Oct

In today’s business environment, management consulting firms must be ready to address client challenges and needs that will transform their business by 10 or 100 times. Tools and methods must be scaled up to ensure applicability to the widest possible audience globally.

The Consulting Workshop Series provides a good understanding of the 10 Methods of conducting Workshops that are custom designed to fit specific workshop objectives. Different methods are developed for the purpose of providing organizations the most appropriate tool necessary to support organizations to achieve their strategic goals and targets.

If management is faced with a situation where the past or present is unlikely to be a guide for the future, Scenario Planning is the best method to use.

Understanding Scenarios as an Effective Tool to Planning

Scenarios are vision-building. It is an effective tool when the degree of uncertainty about the future is high.

What are Scenarios?

Scenarios are narrative descriptions of potential futures that focus our attention on relationships between events and decision points. Its primary objective is planning and preparing for an uncertain future.

Scenarios can be effective in improving long-term decision-making. It motivates change and generates alternative trajectories for future developments. You can use Scenarios to improve preparedness for emergencies and contingencies. Most importantly, Scenarios can be used to guide key choices and generate a vision that can facilitate action.

The Steps to Building a Well-informed Scenario

Building a well-informed Scenario takes 3 strategic stages.

  1. Pre-workshop Phase. The Pre-Workshop Phase is the starting point for establishing the framework of the Scenario-building Workshop. It establishes the opinions and intelligence needed for the workshop. It is also in this phase that the Scenario Team is organized to make sure that the preparations needed for the workshop proper are done in a most effective manner. This is most important as Scenario Teams are the decision makers, the experts, and the creative thinkers necessary in the development of the Scenarios.
  2.  Scenario-building Workshop Phase. Broken down into 2 sub-phases, the Scenario-building Workshop Phase is essential in establishing the scenario logic. It is in this phase wherein key factors in the environment are identified and the approach to fleshing out the Scenarios are established. Essentially, the Scenario-building Workshop Phase builds up the fundamental core elements that will support Scenarios as a useful learning tool.
  3. Post-Workshop Phase. The Post-workshop Phase is the concluding phase where scenarios and analysis are presented to the relevant public to generate insights. At this stage, it most critical that Scenarios are effectively converted into actual plans.

The Challenge: Converting Scenarios to Plans

At the end of the day, it is most important that Scenarios are converted into plans. Scenarios become plans after going through 4 strategic steps – Strategic Analysis, Scenario Creation, Strategy Finding, and Strategy Formulation. These steps shall be thoroughly discussed in the editable PowerPoint.

Interested in gaining more understanding of the Scenario Planning consulting workshop technique? You can learn more and download an editable PowerPoint about Consulting Workshop Series: Scenario Planning here on the Flevy documents marketplace.

Are you a management consultant?

You can download this and hundreds of other consulting frameworks and consulting training guides from the FlevyPro library.

Ethical Failures Are Never Cheap: The 5 Ways to Boosting Ethical Decision Making

18 Oct

Most companies have ethics and compliance policies that get reviewed and signed annually by all employees. A company policy states that “Employees are charged with conducting their business affairs in accordance with the highest ethical standards.” “Morals, as well as legal obligations, will be fulfilled in a manner which will reflect pride on the Company’s name.” These all come from a company’s policy. Yet, to sustain a truly ethical organization, it takes more than a compliance policy or Values Statement.

“Corporate ethical failures have become painfully common, and they are not cheap.”

Billions of dollars have been paid in fines by companies charged with ethical breaches. Despite good intentions, organizations set themselves up for ethical catastrophes. In this age of corporate mistrust, creating an ethical workplace takes more than compliance programs.

Unraveling the Ethical Organization Paradox

According to the National Business Ethics Survey, leaders make concerted efforts to pay holistic attention to their organization’s systems. Yet, despite progress, a number has failed.

  • 41% of workers reported seeing ethical misconduct in the previous 12 months
  • 10% felt organizational pressure to compromise ethical standards
  • $185 M in fines imposed on Wells Fargo as 5300 employees opened up more than a million fraudulent account.

Despite good intentions, organizations set themselves up for ethical catastrophes. The paradox is, without realizing it, organizations tend to create an environment in which people feel forced to make choices they could never have imagined.

Preventing ethical catastrophes can be done. Organizations just need to create that environment where people are encouraged to make ethical choices. There are 5 critical ways organizations can boost ethical decision making.

Boosting Ethical Decision Making in 5 Effective Ways

Boosting ethical decision making is important. This can be achieved when done using the most effective ways.

  1. Foster a Speak Up Culture. This is best applied when the courage needed to raise ethical concerns are inhibited.  The corporate culture will dictate how people within the organization behave.
  2. Create Realistic Performance Targets. The second way of boosting ethical decision focus on ensuring that people do not make compromising choices to reach targets.
  3. Ensure Goals Are Fair and Non-conflicting. The culture of fairness in the organization is the main focus here. This is best applied when there are conflicting goals in pursuit of growth.
  4. Infuse Ethics into Regular Activities. This approach is the most challenging but life-changing. Often, leaders talk about business ethics only when there is a scandal or as part of the organization’s compliance program. Infusing ethics into regular activities ensure that ethics becomes an everyday part of the organization and its DNA. It becomes embedded in the way people relate with each other, work with each other, and even in the application of its processes and systems. Here, ethics become your organization’s everyday life.
  5. Set a Positive Example. Leaders play a vital role in setting higher standards when it comes to ethics. Essentially, they must be able to put themselves in the shoes of those they lead to see what unintended meaning they are sending. This can be seen in how they react to stressful situations or event confront poor performance. Leaders need to become extra vigilant as others may interpret their actions or behavior otherwise.

Organizations don’t want to find themselves in a front-page scandal. Hence, they must scrutinize their actions to far greater degrees than they may have realized. The 5 Ways of Boosting Ethical Decision Making can just be the organization’s steppingstone towards transforming into an Ethical Organization and sustaining it.

Interested in gaining more understanding of how Ethical Organizations improve Ethical Decision Making? You can learn more and download an editable PowerPoint about Ethical Organization: Improving Ethical Decision Making here on the Flevy documents marketplace.

Are you a management consultant?

You can download this and hundreds of other consulting frameworks and consulting training guides from the FlevyPro library.


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