Ethics from the Bottom Up
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Despite considerable research and discussion, the key to ensuring ethical behavior in hospitality organizations remains unclear. Over the years, hospitality industry practitioners have taken numerous substantive steps to establish the importance of ethical conduct. One common practice is for a company to have written ethical standards or a code of conduct. While these efforts help to ensure that standards of ethical practice are understood, a corresponding focus on the daily behavior of individual employees is also essential. Organizational practices that facilitate employees’ ethical awareness and decision making include establishing a clear organizational fit during the selection process, maintaining ongoing performance dialogues, and communicating ethical expectations in daily interpersonal interactions. To foster and direct these communication activities, this report presents the “values discussion tool.” This tool provides scenarios, forced-choice questions, rating scales, and self-reported personal profiles, with the goal of exploring employee priorities, uncovering underlying assumptions, and reaffirming organizational values.