Ethics in RTO
Ethics in RTO is a subject that has been discussed in many gatherings across the United States at various functions over the years. The biggest misconception is the separation between personal ethics and business ethics because there is no difference between the two. They are the same. You either behave in an ethical manner or you don’t whether it be in the workplace or in your personal life.
My definition of ethical behavior is doing the right thing, at the right time, for the right reason, regardless who is watching. Ironically that is also my definition of Integrity. People that posses the character trait of integrity behave in an ethical manner. Therefore, integrity needs to be the foundation of our Ethics Training Program along with honesty, character and responsibility. Lets dissect the above definition.
The Right Thing;
As RTO Professionals we have to be clear and concise as to why we do what we do and the reasons thereof. We must continue to monitor our thinking to assure that we are continuously doing the right thing.
At the Right Time;
When we are clear on what is the right thing to do then there is no better time to do it than right now. When you are faced with problems or situations as we all are on a daily basis make your decisions immediately and stand by your decision.
Our decisions must be made based on the facts and we all know that new facts come to the table after the decision has been made, therefore,
A good rule to follow;
“I don’t always make the right decision, however, I always make my decisions right.”
For the Right Reason;
We must continue to determine that the decisions we make are for the right reason. As leaders in our industry we have to make the tough decisions that are not always the most popular of the options that were available to us, however it was for the right reason.
The real reason we are all on the payroll is to satisfy the wants and needs of the people we serve in a manner that improves the quality of their lives. When you are successful at that, then everything else will fall into place.
Regardless who is watching;
The true content of a mans character is revealed by the
decisions he makes and the actions he takes with someone who cannot benefit him in the least. It is not important who is watching, what is important is that you are doing the right thing, at the right time and for the right reason.
Why we do what we do and where our behavior comes from?
A person could spend their entire lifetime attempting to answer that question. Sygmund Freud’s teachings indicate that every decision we make is directly related to obtaining pleasure or avoiding pain. An NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming) technique describes that we are either moving towards something or moving away from something else. I tend to agree with both concepts.
The behavior we demonstrate on a daily basis is a result of the training we received previously in our life beginning in our infancy. We have been programmed through cultural conditioning of our past beginning with our Parents and involving Teachers, Principals, Counselors, Bosses, Friends and the people that we associate with.
The influence of others has been a powerful force in all of our lives. We must accept the possibility that those people that have so dramatically influenced our lives in the past ,were simply teaching us what they have learned and that it may not be correct by today’s standards. Therefore, we must constantly analyze our behaviors to confirm that our decisions and actions are consistent with our Beliefs and Values and not someone else’s.
In the event you do not have congruency in your decisions and actions then you must consider the source and fix it. By fixing it, I mean changing your perception of what it means to you by increasing your level of awareness through study. Congruency simply put is, when what you are thinking, what you are saying and what you are doing are consistent.
Times are changing;
If you listen to any Scientists, the one inevitable truth is that everything is in a constant state of change. What this means to me is that we have hope for the future. If we are not happy with the present state of our Organization, then you possess the power to change it.
There are three things needed to assure ethical behavior from the people in your Organization.
1) A clear and concise description to all personnel as to why we are on the payroll. That being ” to satisfy the wants and needs of the people we serve in a manner that improves the quality of their life.”
2) The entity and the people in it are responsible for their actions. The ultimate responsibility lies with the CEO initially, however all employees are responsible to assure that interactions with our customers send the message loud and clear that ” we are here to serve them”.
3) There is a commitment by all personnel to do what is right all the time because it is based on the foundation of Honesty, Integrity, Character and several other qualities that you must discover yourself, while reorganizing, if need be, the foundation of your Company.