Ethical leadership has major benefits for both the short-term and long term success of the company. This creates a positive work culture, brand image and the emotional well being of your team and ultimately clients and/or customers.
Being an ethical leader means you set an example for your employees to follow. As a leader, you are an influencer and an inspiration to your employees. These leaders make sure to keep ethics as the principles that govern their behaviour inside and outside of work, they consistently demonstrate good values through both words and actions.
Being an ethical leader means you should understand your values as well as the values of those around you. Your role is to inspire, nurture and guide your employees to help them improve.
An ethical leader:
-Positively influences behaviours in the workplace and towards the clients.
-They create positive impacts that steer the company away from unjust outcomes.
-Is honest, fair, respectful and humane – treat others how they wish to be treated.
-Focuses on team building – team building creates unity, team spirit and trust.
-Encourage initiative – Praises employees for taking the first steps on their own.
-Keeps value above all when decision making – organisational values must be maintained.
-Is willing to evolve – facing the changes in the workforce head-on and adapt.
-Communicates openly – making your company a place of trust and honesty.
But what can I do to make sure I am being an ethical leader?
Practice self-care often:
This means you need to look after yourself so you have the ability to look after those around you. You can only be at your best for others when you are at your best with yourself.
Define and align your values with your behaviour:
This should come from your beliefs i.e treating others how you wish to be treated, showing respect to everyone, understanding, being honest and having empathy. This shows your true authentic self which in turn encourages your employees to follow the same path.
Practice self-awareness often to limit any bias you may have:
As humans, we have beliefs subconscious or not that can be very old beliefs. It’s important to make sure you are aware of actions towards others and understand decisions you are making that limit any possible bias:
Be intentional with your recruitment process:
Try to hire people that have similar values to yours. It’s important to align your values with your employees. All in all, will create harmony around the workplace as everyone can relate to one another.
Encourage open communication around the workplace:
Make it a space where everyone feels comfortable speaking up and sharing ideas, opinions and honest feedback. It’s important as a leader to have complete transparency as well as your entire company and those who work within it.
Have your own influencers and role models:
Just because you are a leader does not mean you can’t have role models yourself. It’s important to have people you can aspire to, learn from and that encourages your growth as a leader.
These behaviours and actions are extremely positive around the workplace, it boosts morale, initiative, teamwork, motivation and employee retention rates, not to mention the unity around the company, its brand image and ultimate success.
To succeed as an ethical leader you must lead by example, your employees will follow suit. Leading by example is the best way to ensure an ethical business, this instils respect, trust and honesty.