The Security Career Impact of Personal Reputation and Ethics
SMR Group recently conducted a proficiency study of 5,500 security professionals, 69 percent of whom reported ethics and values, or integrity and trust, to be one of their top five competencies. This is unsurprising as these are expected traits given the nature of the security profession. Interestingly, only 14.5 percent placed business acumen in their top five.
Similarly, companies that weave strong ethics and integrity policies into their core values tend to financially outperform other corporations over time. Key elements of these programs are a code of expected conduct surrounding behavior of employees including corporate leadership, suppliers, and potential vendors.
Business ethics guidelines often include policy standards addressing prohibitions of behaviors that, while not criminal in nature, are viewed by the corporation as unacceptable. Companies recognize the negative reputational significance of actions that can project the appearance of impropriety or a lack of transparency.
The security function is often charged with administration of ethics programs within organizations. Activities can include awareness training, reporting and investigative efforts. As a result, there is higher visibility associated with the conduct of security leaders. Great care must be taken by those who manage these programs to ensure that internal and external dealings do not damage either the practitioner’s, or the company’s, credibility…
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