Professor of Creativity and Leadership, Chris Bones, comments on JP Morgan’s record $13bn settlement with US regulators
Another day brings another bank story where business culture is brought into question. The crisis in financial services and its aftermath have highlighted a serious question that all businesses need to reflect upon: how is it that over the last quarter of the 20th century ‘good business’ no longer means ‘good ethics’? There have always been business practices that are unethical from earliest recorded examples of false weights and measures and selling rotten food through to today’s mis-selling scandals of which this is just one more example. What is different about today is that ethical behaviour is seen as the exception, rather than the norm. Leaders in all sectors need to take a long hard look at their cultures and start holding themselves and those they employ to account. Selling bad goods to your customers is unethical. Fixing your reports on patient care is unethical. Behaving unethically should not be tolerated in any organisation and it’s up to today’s leaders to start to make that stick.