An old boss of mine used to say: “when the going gets tough, the tough change.” And right now times are tough. It’s in these times I wonder what keeps top level executives from changing into white collar criminals. With the current state of the economy there are many reasons a CEO could come up with for cutting corners and breaking the law. I agree with my old boss in that the tough might change their business model, or move some people around, but at the core, the tough also remain ethical regardless of changes in circumstances.
The Ethisphere’s World’s Most Ethical (WME) Companies ranking provides companies a chance to be recognized for their efforts in ethics and compliance. The winners of the World’s Most Ethical Companies are the standouts. Each of these companies will have materially higher scores versus their competitors. They are the companies who force other companies to follow their leadership or fall behind. WME honorees not only promote ethical business standards and practices internally, they exceed legal compliance minimums and shape future industry standards by introducing best practices today.
A record 145 companies made the 2012 World’s Most Ethical Companies list, which includes more than three dozen industries, from aerospace to wind power, and this year Blue Shield of California was honored. As one of the largest private health-care philanthropies in California, Blue Shield of California Foundation aims to make health care effective, safe, and accessible for Californians, and to help end domestic violence. The foundation, founded in 1989, is focused on supporting community health centers and domestic violence shelters with core support, capacity-building, and leadership development.
I’d like to congratulate Blue Shield for upholding high standards of ethical business practices even in these tough economic times. A strong ethical foundation is a competitive advantage, and I’m very happy that Blue Shield recognizes the important role corporate responsibility plays in providing transparency and trust.