Upholding Ethical Principles

FCA fines in 2015 totalled at £905m. This shows the old approach to ethics isn’t working. Ethical codes and compliance prove a positive guide for business, but a deep-rooted ethical commitment evolves from belonging. Trying to impose ethical behaviour through ‘command and control’ is ineffective when culture governs behaviour. What matters is understanding how to make everyday decisions.

We believe that commitment beats compliance. We create a sense of belonging, driving commitment in your employees to ensure they understand the relevance of the rules. We make it far easier to navigate potential grey areas without slipping up.

Ethics is often summed-up as ‘Doing the right thing’. A sense of belonging makes this intuitive. But what happens if it’s not well understood?


  • Team leaders fill the vacuum and interpret ‘the right thing’… but risk being wrong
  • Localised variance of ethical standards, depending on leaders’ behaviour
  • Code of conduct is out of date, in formal or distant language, not relevant to people’s daily work
  • Policies, codes, principles, are in documents but not in people’s second nature – removed from practical business
  • Blame, fear or lack of candour by leaders means its not OK to raise concerns
  • Risk of ethical contravention, expensive regulatory fines, and breaking trust with customers
  • Risk of damage to reputation affects long-term business sustainability and license to operate

How we can help

A confidential, objective review of current collateral, protocols, and practice. Followed by an Ethics and Belonging Exploration with senior team, representing all disciplines and operations, to set the foundations and assess ethical risk. A deeper and wider programme to establish a culture of ethics is mid-longer term.

"Doing the right thing doesn't automatically bring success but compromising ethics almost always leads to failure"