ethics

Enthused for Ethical Consumer

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As the green movement evolves and companies try to better attract new consumers and maintain old ones, they need to focus increasingly on not only whether they (and their competitors’) goods are made of x% recycled materials, but also whether overall they are operating a good business. Enter the Ethical Consumer Research Association Ltd.  This UK based company has offerings in products/services research for consumers, and consultancy services for businesses, by training a high-powered-morally-righteous-lens on the companies producing them.  Ethical Consumer scores the brands based on 19 factors broken down into these categories:  animals, environment, people (e.g. workers’ rights & supply chain management), politics, and sustainability.

And since they are such a nice company, we appreciate that they’re freely giving away with registration, 1) the surface-level charts of companies’ scores on everything from bread making machines to travel insurance, and 2) lengthy reports on the ethical factors impacting that good/service that you’ll find by scrolling down the page.

Check out their current freebie chart for cell phones.  Based on the example of the phones’ abysmal scores, one can readily see the potential for brand differentiation by evolving into a halo-worthy institution.

Is Your Business Good Enough?

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Does your business need a moral makeover? Or, are you trying to research issues in business ethics?  If so, then the Institute for Global Ethics (IGE) is a great place to start.  For those considering a makeover, the IGE has a branch devoted to corporations called (unsurprisingly) the Center for Corporate Ethics, which offers an array of services including  assessments, training workshops, consulting, and customized codes of ethics.

For those interested in researching ethical situations, (or if you want to see how your business stacks up), then there are two places on the site to visit:

1) The IGE’s Dilemmas page presents real-life scenarios, excluding their resolutions, to initiate pondering and deep water-cooler conversation.

2) We saved the best for last.  The IGE’s Publications page  includes many free in-dept analytical articles, book excerpts, Executive Briefings, and White Papers to help individuals and institutions gain valuable knowledge to augment their moral compass alignment.