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  • September 25, 2021

How to Run a Small Business More Ethically

Running your business in a way that’s truly ethical is something that lots of people are thinking about today. Ethical business practices come in many different shapes and sizes, and running your business in an ethical manner comes with a wide range of benefits.

First of all, it ensures a more cohesive and positive workplace and team dynamic. It can also help appeal to customers who increasingly care about buying from ethical and responsible businesses. Find out more about running your business more ethically below.

Expect Professionalism From Your Team

It’s important that you start by looking at the way in which your staff members behave, particularly when it comes to the ways in which they interact with the public and your customers. The last thing you want is for them to project a negative image of your business to the outside world, but there’s certainly a chance of that happening if you’re not careful. Let them know the levels of professionalism that are expected of them at all times, and don’t accept anything less.

Keep Workplace Rules Ethical

Of course, you can’t just demand things from your staff without also thinking about the way in which your business treats its staff. You should make sure that you take an ethical approach to workplace rules and the general way in which employees are treated and how their well-being is taken into consideration. Make sure your rules don’t breach their employment rights in any way, and try to do things collaboratively rather than combatively.

Work to Reduce Your Environmental Impact

One thing that can’t be overlooked these days when we’re talking about ethics in the world of business is the environment and how eco-friendly your business is. You want to make sure you’re doing everything you possibly can to reduce the overall impact your business has on the environment. There’s no excuse for allowing your business to negatively impact the planet these days, and it’s something that customers are no longer very forgiving of either.

Get Involved in the Local Community

Getting involved with the local community and making sure that you play a part in it is important. You’ll develop a closer and more loyal relationship with your customers when your business feels truly routed and connected to the community in which it exists. You should do your best to get involved in the community and help local charities, for example. It’s up to you how you approach this, but it all comes down to having a positive impact of some sort.

Do Your Best to Positively Influence Your Industry

Working ethically is something that’s not just about your own business but your entire industry. As a business owner that operates in that industry, you’ll have an impact on its general trajectory. If you have information about bad or even illegal industry practices, you should contact the Whistleblower Info Center and potentially consider getting the details out there about what’s going on. It’s the right thing to do and should result in the ethical standards of your industry being raised.

Respect the Businesses You Work With

When you’re working with other companies, you need to make sure that you’re showing them respect and taking their needs into account as well as yours. It’s highly unethical to completely ignore and overlook what your partners and collaborators are doing for you. Show appreciation and act to cement those positive working relationships over the long-term. Doing so will ultimately serve your business well and ensure you achieve the best possible outcomes for your business.

Remain Accountable

Finally, you need to make sure that you remain accountable at all times. It’s the very least that you owe your customers, staff members and business partners. If you ignore your obligations and refuse to take responsibility for the actions you take, people will start to see your business as attempting to act unethically, and that’s obviously not what you want. It’s up to you to put in place systems that promote accountability across the board and at all levels of the business, no matter how high. It’s the only fair and proper way to run a business these days.

Running a small business in a way that’s ethical and responsible should be a top priority for your company today. If it’s something that you want to start thinking about more, be sure to make the most of the ideas we’ve discussed above. Each of them will serve you well as you start down this path.

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