“Every firm has a culture, whether you employ 10 or 10,000 people.”
Those were the words of Sian Fisher (pictured), chief executive of the Chartered Insurance Institute (CII), when the professional body released a new resource called Building trust through ethical culture: A guide for SME firms.
The 30-page document, which is available on the CII website, is designed to serve as a practical framework for small- and medium-sized enterprises when it comes to promoting ethical culture and how it relates to client and public trust. It was written by insurance and ethics expert Duncan Minty, who is a Chartered Insurance Practitioner.
“This guide sets out the steps that small to medium firms can take to understand and influence the culture at their firms, so that as a result, trust in their firm is legitimately earned from their employees and clients, and will be more sustainable,” said Fisher.
The report discusses the importance of adopting a clear leadership style; implementing an open narrative in all business dealings; the understanding of ethics in terms of tone given to company strategies, plans, and targets; and the capabilities and delivery of an ethical culture by the organisation and its people.
“To build trust in your firm, you need to address the ethics of the behaviours, beliefs, and habits within its culture,” explained Minty, who believes trust influences the success of a business.
“For the benefit of the consumer, it is important to bring these elements together because those behaviours, beliefs, and habits will determine the ethical culture within the firm, and that ethical culture will influence the trust that people have in the firm.”