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Business Ethics

As any country has its own language, so various fields of activity have their own language of behavior. This language is called ethics. Arriving in another country, but not having learned the language of this country, a foreigner risks to goof off. At best, they will not understand him that way; at worst, he can make a number of unforgivable mistakes, for which, according to local laws, he can be hanged. The same applies to the ethics of business communication - it is true that no one will be seriously punished for its violation, but they can be fired from work.


Morality is at the center of ethics - it defines the boundaries of relationships, actions and interactions of people in society. Ethics of business relations are the theoretical foundations of relationships between people in a particular professional field. The essence of these principles is determined by professional and ethical norms and standards (this is not just the psychology of each individual person). It is believed that any professional communication should proceed on the basis of business ethics.

The principle of any ethics, like language, is to be "on the same wavelength" with the environment. If this feeling does not arise, then a person falls into resonance with society, and this society will crowd him out of his collective. However, if this person is a strong personality, he will be able to change the ethics of the whole society for himself and the team will have to accept new conditions. But this rarely happens.

Sometimes, difficult cases arise in the ethics of business relations. For example, in general principles of ethics in front of an open door it is necessary to let women go forward. But according to the ethics of business communication, if a man, rising in an elevator, stands closer to the doors, and a woman stands behind him, a man does not need to let a woman forward. You must go first. When several norms contradicting each other revolve in the head, confusion arises and a person falls into a stupor. Therefore, a clear gradation of all ethical rules is needed.

It is important not to forget which ethics to apply in a particular place.

Main components

Ethical standards are divided into two groups. The first is the principles and elements of etiquette, respect, tolerance, which the person has owned since childhood. The second group is those functions of the development of service relationships, whose structure is the norm of the organization in which the person carries out his activities.

There are generally accepted norms that are the foundation of all ethics, including business relationships.

The rules are very simple:

  • to be the same as the whole team surrounding you;
  • not stand out both externally (clothes, hairstyle), and emotionally;
  • obey the general rules and regulations;
  • to be kind, courteous, responsible, non-conflict, and better - humble;
  • have a clear and beautiful speech;
  • be hardworking;
  • be stress resistant.

There are ten other basics of business etiquette that will be appropriate in any company:

  • Arrive on time. In the business world, it’s best to follow the rule: “Arrive five minutes before.” You need to give yourself enough time to arrive at the venue quickly, take off your coat and calm down a bit. Arriving at the meeting exactly at the appointed time can make you feel nervous, and everyone will see it. Time is a commodity; being punctual, you show that you respect others.
  • The dress is suitable. While appropriate clothing, of course, varies from company principles, some things remain unchanged. Clean, ironed clothes without any loose threads or tags, as well as relatively polished shoes with closed toes, are a must. If in doubt, contact HR personnel to be sure that you have picked the right clothes.
  • Speak kindly. Make sure you greet your colleagues and remember the need to say please and thank you. These words are of great importance in the way you are perceived. Your good manners show that you recognize those around you and are attentive to their presence.

Avoid discussing political or religious issues. Keep the conversation focused on an undeniable topic, one that you can easily talk about. Such diplomacy is the main idea of ​​business etiquette.

  • Avoid gossip. Gossip is a childish behavior that has no place at work. If you hear a rumor about someone in the workplace, do not transmit it. People do not always know or remember who starts the rumor, but they always remember who spreads it.
  • Show interest in. Do not play on your phone or computer if a colleague is standing next to you and is telling you something. Keep friendly eye contact.
  • Remember body language. In the Western world, shaking hands is still a typical greeting. Say hello to someone with a strong but quick handshake. Hugs or other attachments that you share with friends and family are inappropriate in the workplace.
  • Introduce yourself and others. Sometimes it may seem that people don’t remember your name or position. If you are with an employee who has just appeared in the company, take the time to introduce him to others. This will help you and him feel comfortable in the office.
  • Do not interrupt. When you have a great idea or suddenly remember something important, you may be tempted to express an idea immediately. Do not do this. Demonstrating that you are an attentive listener is the foundation of diplomacy.
  • Do not swear. Using vulgar language is a sure way to become unpopular in the workplace. Business etiquette requires a constant awareness that you are in a diverse environment with people you do not know on a personal level. Therefore, swear words are not always appropriate in the work environment.
  • Get rid of bad smell and be quieter. If you visit the bar after work, do not drink too much alcohol. While at work, take care not to bring particularly unpleasant food, the smell of which not everyone in the office will perceive. Do not make noise during or after meals. Believe me, nobody wants to hear this.


Speaking specifically about the ethics of business relations, it consists of several areas.

  • Ethics of addressing a person. Each company has its own. The formation of the image of each employee, its relationship with other employees, its purpose and role in the team depends on this. The companies greet executives differently depending on the corporate culture. For example, in modern startups it is customary to communicate with the leader on “you”, to represent not by name and patronymic, but only by name or nickname.
  • Business card ethics. This is one of the components of business ethics. The subject of this ethics is the usual business card. In Russia, not so long ago, it became customary to exchange cards when meeting people. Each corporate culture has its own options for creating and naming business cards - somewhere you can’t indicate your position, but somewhere, on the contrary, many are even allowed to mark their achievements on the business card.
  • Ethics of clothing and manner of communication. This is also part of the ethics of business relationships. In the workforce, men and women have different rules and regulations for corporate wardrobe and makeup. In most companies, they are prescribed in a special code. For example, many women are forbidden to wear trousers at work, and men have the obligation to wear a tie. About the norms of communication will be discussed below.
  • Ethics of written business communication. Each company has its own templates for business letters. Even intra-collective correspondence in many companies is subject to special rules and regulations.

For example, in most companies it is customary for colleagues to contact "You" (the word must be capitalized). So, according to many leaders, the subordination and business course of the conversation are respected.

Generally accepted rules and regulations

In essence, the ethics of business relations is a system of behavior invented and calculated by analysts for successful business. Such a system limits a person in terms of friendship and love relationships, but opens up great opportunities in terms of making useful contacts. But any person is characterized by the need for friendship or informal communication, and sometimes it’s difficult for the authorities to restrain such “impulses” if they slip in business communication.

If business ethics is violated, the employee has every right to terminate visual and verbal contact with the subject until he himself considers it necessary to continue the dialogue.

In world practice, there are generally accepted rules that must be observed when communicating in any business society:

  • the interlocutor needs to ask questions in such a form and with such a content that they do not unbalance him;
  • it is necessary to give the interlocutor the opportunity to speak calmly;
  • in any way possible, you should try to facilitate the interlocutor's perception of your theses and proposals;
  • if the interlocutor has lost the thread of the conversation or there has been a hitch in the conversation, you need to help him with leading questions;
  • answering questions must be concisely and clearly, it is important to divide your statement into certain semantic stages - so it will be easier for the interlocutor to perceive your speech, but their number does not matter;
  • Do not rush to answer - first you need to make sure that you understand the question correctly;
  • if negative, incorrect words, expressions or concepts are used in a question, this does not mean that they need to be repeated - it is important to remember that your speech reflects you as an employee;
  • it is better not to answer provocative questions and formulated problems at all or to transfer the conversation to the person who asks the question.

Such simple rules will allow you to maintain a long business relationship and a good atmosphere in the team. Observing these standards will always be perceived by society as a well-educated, intelligent and serious person and employee.

About the culture of communication and the ethics of business relations, see the next video.

Watch the video: Business Ethics LectureLessonDefinition: An Introduction and History Lesson (February 2020).


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