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New Malaysia, Fresh expectation
As we begin this new year and embrace the open accepted slogan of New Malaysia (Malaysia Baru), all it means for the people is an aspiration for a new, clean, corrupt-free government. The desire and hope for a clean administration is not only confined to public administration but also to corporations be it big, medium or small enterprises in a transparent and ethical dealings.
When corruption is perceived to be deeply rooted in business dealings, it is not an easy habit or the perception of it to be rid of in a bling of an eye. It requires all sectors to revamp society into the required right path. Most importantly it requires self-imposed restrain. It is the self realisation that will lead to fair play. Fair play businesses will flourish and encourages economic growth. Fair play encourages business players to offer innovation and value added services to be competitive. There are ample laws to regulate business ethics, but it is the personal choice that makes the laws bite.
Ethics in dealing business in Malaysia is even more important especially for SMEs which collectively make up to about 97% of the country’s business establishments. Our very own experience we witnessed in our own country as well as the experiences we witnessed in other countries plague with corruption or any elements of unethical business dealings have powerful impact to the extent of crippling nations. It is therefore pertinent to hold true the notion of ethics to not only safeguards economic growth but powerful enough to safeguard a nation’s stability economically, socially and politically.
Educating stakeholders, be it business owners, managers and employees, consumers and government agencies and even political bodies, is very important in achieving ethical business dealings and management. To achieve this, there is a need for more awareness for such stakeholders. Perhaps, a much recommended management instrument such as ethical code of conduct specially develop by and for a business entity as a guideline
for an ethical behaviour of managers and employees as a tool to create a coherent way of operating and thus avoiding ambiguity and dilemmas and improve well beings of employees and managers.
One of the effective tools to educate SME community is through direct education such as seminars, trainings and workshops. Managers and employees should be encouraged to take advantage of such opportunity whenever available. Business owners should invest on its human resources to be more apt to business ethics as it will not only benefit its workforce but to the general wellbeing of the business itself. Greater emphasis is placed on leaders to ensure ethical behaviour within an organization.
Putting politics aside, the 1MDB case is a classic example of the Code’s failure. The 1MDB case is not a stand alone case but in fact has spiralled effect on to many other big government linked corporations into its ugly fiasco. The question now is, do we need to revamp the Code or are there alternatives? I guess, it all boils down to bold enforcement of laws to mete the perpetrators to achieve what the Code has intended it to be.
In a community which is perceived to be, even though it is not entirely true, that unethical way of doing business is rampant, makes it more important to reinforce ethical values which guidelines are embodied in the Ethics Code of business dealings. Such exposure will ensure that human resources are empowered knowing that they are within the expected conduct of what are ethical and not be hindered by the negative perceptions of community they are engaged with. After all, perception in itself is powerful enough to make or break any organization.
Note : In KIQ, we have adopted and certified ISO Management as guidelines for our operations. It is proven to be effective in minimising mistakes, cost effective and managing turnaround time.