Code of Ethics for International Marketing

Code of Ethics for International Marketing

Business ethics are not laws; they arise from an organization’s internal culture. When agreed upon or used as a screening tool for potential employees, ethics provide a foundation of the shared values and acceptable behaviour that establish the organization as a group of individuals working toward shared goals. Ethics are not uniform across a business sector. When the ethics of an organization are unclear or unenforced, the expected conduct of organization members can become diffuse, and the organization may lose its ability to align its employees’ efforts to work toward the organization’s goals. The same result follows when an organization has a written code of ethics, but there is no commitment to disseminate, promote and enforce the expected behaviour. In such cases, ethical documents are treated as irrelevant. Far from being a purely abstract or decorative document, a code of ethics or code of conduct establishes an identity for the group.

The international code of ethics presented below will serve as a moral compass to aid global organizations in business decisions. The stipulated code will serve as a standard in global ethics to establish and regulate ethical, social, and environmental responsibilities of companies operating in global markets. The established standard will become a useful tool in comparing, and measuring the level of responsibility taken by global organizations. As such organizations will be held accountable to ensure their decisions do not cause negative social outcomes on foreign economies.

Code of ethics

  1. Respect the economic and social environment of foreign markets. Carefully measure the impact of business on:
    1. The economy: The ethical organization will care about the global economy by helping to create positive economic conditions not only for the wealthy but also for the most vulnerable of citizens as well.
    2. Social welfare: The business or institution  shall take action to ensure not to harm social welfare with the introduction of business in the foreign economy. The organization will not take part in business that will destroy the livelihoods of citizens, otherwise harm, or take advantage of citizens.
  2. Laws and regulations:
    1. Respect the rules, laws, and cultural behaviours and traditions of foreign countries when conducting business in foreign markets.
    2. Political climate: The business or institution shall understand and respect the politics and the way that the government is governing the country in which trade will be happening.
    3. Multilateral trade: Organizations will support trade agreements between many nations at once. Multilateral trade allows all nations involved in the agreement equal trading treatment.
  3. Respect the environment of foreign countries, and avoid business activities that would otherwise damage it or impede it:
    1. Avoid illicit operations:  Do not conduct illegal business questionable in ethical behaviour.
    2. Environmental pollution: Do not conduct business in foreign countries that one would not conduct in one’s own country for the purpose of preserving one’s own environment at the detriment of another’s.
    3. Exploitation of resources: Do not conduct business in any way that will take natural resources and exploit and possibly cause extinction of such natural resources.
  4. Corporate Culture requires that all involved organizations understand the culture of other countries and in unity develop guidelines that will help form a shared culture.  A corporate culture has:
    1. Shared goals and values: Deciding what is good and bad for all those involved sets a guideline of expected behaviour.  Establishing goals declares what need to be achieved and all parties can focus on attaining the desired results.
    2. Learning culture: Such a culture will facilitate sharing knowledge among teams.  It will also help in reviewing the successes and failures in the relationships as they seek change.
    3. Clan control of values: A requirement for non-straightforward issues, requiring trial and error, adaptation, and flexibility.
    4. Leadership: By example, successful leaders will lead all teams in enacting the proposed code of ethics.  Followers adopt the values portrayed by their leaders even when they are not seen as ethical.

Previous Question                           Next Question


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.