Ethics, Risk and Governance



One of the lessons of the 2008 banking crisis has been that ethics matters to business, both in terms of its reputation and its sustainability.

Setting the right values and culture is integral to a company's success and its abiliy to generate value over the longer term. The challenge for business is how to develop and embed real values. This requires leadership and is a core task for boards. Many boards acknowledge hte importance of a healthy corporate culture, both because of the role this plays in mitigating risk and because of the value to their franchise of a sound reputation.

This paper sets out why directors need to be actively involved in setting and maintaining a company's ethical values and suggests some ways to approach it. It aims to help directors define their contribution to the maintenance of sound values and culture.