Senior leadership ‘set the tone’ by referring to the values and expectations of the company when they address employees. Ultimately, the actions of leaders speak louder than words. Messages are strengthened when leaders visibly follow the same rules as everyone else.

When we talk about leadership, we don't just mean the chair, CEO, or senior leadership team; leadership can be applied locally too, to business leads, or managing directors of businesses within a group of companies.

Line managers have an essential role in effectively communicating the organisation’s ethics message and acting as role models for the employees they manage. ‘Tone from the middle’ is as important as ‘tone from the top’.

Why tone at the top is so important

Simon Webley illustrates how important it is to have ethical leadership

Useful resources

Setting the Tone: a New Zealand perspective on ethical business leadership

Publication type: Report

Setting the Tone: a New Zealand perspective on ethical business leadership

28 Nov 2017

From aspiration to action? Reflections on The Ethics Study 2021

Blog

From aspiration to action? Reflections on The Ethics Study 2021

The Ethics Study author, Rob Hayward, shares his personal reflections in our latest guest blog.

15 Apr 2021

Strong, ethical culture - even more important as the world of work transforms radically

Blog

Strong, ethical culture - even more important as the world of work transforms radically

IBE Chair David Grayson talks to Robbie Robertson, Virtual Office Managing Partner, Deloitte, based in Sydney, Australia.

31 Mar 2021

The Ethics Study 2021 - Principia

External resource

The Ethics Study 2021 - Principia

This study, conducted by Principia in conjunction with Clifford Chance, the International Chamber of Commerce, GlobeScan, INvolve, and the Institute of Business Ethics, was designed to provide insights into how organisations are reacting to new ethical challenges and gauge leaders’ views on how best to build an ethical culture.

29 Mar 2021