King of Ethics - Dominic Collett, the Chairman of the KwaZulu-Natal Business Chambers Council
King of Ethics - Dominic Collett, the Chairman of the KwaZulu-Natal Business Chambers Council



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King of Ethics - Dominic Collett, the Chairman of the KwaZulu-Natal Business Chambers Council

2016-12-01

King of Ethics! This month saw the launch of the Kings IV Report on Corporate Governance TM (King IV) by the King Committee and the Institute of Directors in South Africa (IODSA).

Business, on the whole, should take on the guidelines of the King Report to assist in the control and direction of ethical business practices.

Values of respect, trust and honesty echo through many boardroom discussions when formulating strategic visions of organisations. Putting these values into action in a world seemingly dominated by dishonesty and manipulated agendas appears to be very difficult.

The documentary film entitled '(Dis) Honesty - The Truth about Lies' inspired by the work of behavioural economist, Dan Ariely, explores the human tendency to be dishonest.

Without regurgitating the documentary, in essence the work highlighted that lies start out fairly innocently before starting down a slippery road to larger fatal consequences.

The more we lie, the more we adapt to accommodate our deception. As to what stops the lies, however is not the threat of punishment but to remind people of their moral values. In experiments conducted by Ariely self-professed atheists were not prone to cheating once they swore on the Bible that they would be truthful. When university students were asked to list the Ten Commandments, even when they didn't remember all of them, they didn't cheat. After having signed honour codes before taking tests students did not cheat - Forbes.

Therefore, the release of the King IV Report is an important document that reminds us of moral and ethical responsibility rather than the threat of punishment.

The King Report also documents the importance of inclusive capitalism calling on business to work towards closing the economic social gap. This theme currently runs through many initiatives of government, business, labour and civil society. The hope is that together South Africa can win this battle.

It has been a difficult year for business and a great deal of hard work has been done through 2016. I wish everyone a festive and happy holiday and a well-deserved rest. 




King of Ethics - Dominic Collett, the Chairman of the KwaZulu-Natal Business Chambers Council

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