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In an Internet survey ending May 30, 2003, we asked people how ethical they felt their employers were. The results were mixed.
Just under half of employees said their employers were very ethical or extremely ethical. This was the good news.
However, just under a third said their employers were unethical, with 5% saying their employers were extremely unethical. Furthermore, 22% said their employers were "somewhat ethical;" certainly not a raving review.
The importance of these results cannot be understated. We've watched while some companies have gone out of business because of ethics violations. The senior managements of others have go to or will be going to trial because of their alleged ethical lapses, and some will have plenty of time behind bars to reflect upon their questionable decision making.
Here is what we asked and how people responded.
How would you rate your employer on the following ethics scale?
If you are an employer, you should consider trying to find out where ethical problems are perceived to exist in your organization in time to take corrective action. We can assist you in this endeavor.