Have businesses become more ethical?

An Investor’s Business Daily story reports that businesses have made major ethical strides in the past couple years:

The Ethics Resource Center’s National Business Ethics Survey, released late last year, shows that 49% of employees witnessed misconduct in the past year. That’s improved from 56% in the previous survey two years ago. Whistle-blowing is up and pressure to commit ethical violations is down. Ethical cultures are stronger, too. “It makes sense when things are not going so well and there’s more scrutiny from regulators and the press, people will be more conscientious,” Michael Oxley, chairman of the Ethics Resource Center, a research group in Washington, D.C., told IBD.

We don’t know much about the survey but we’d like to learn more. We do agree with Mr. Oxley however that behavior changes when attention is paid to the behavior. From the beginning of the MBA Oath we have said, Let’s put a spotlight on leadership. Let’s go public.Let’s commit to creating value responsibly, ethically and legally. That is how change is made.

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