Ethics and integrity in cross cultural business

“Be wise and give serious thought to the way you live.”  (King Solomon in Proverbs 23:19)

The football season is over for another year but not without its accusations of cheating, scandal and ethical challenges.  Such is true of all of life and especially in doing business internationally and cross culturally.

Doing business ethically between cultures is not as easy as it might sound.  For example, I often hear people say, “We don’t pay bribes,” but I often wonder what they mean by that.  While the Bible is clear on many principles of ethics, it sometimes seems blurry for some situations.  It’s a challenge to come up with guidelines that consider our Biblical standards, our own home culture, and the host culture of operation.

I’ll be exploring this topic in greater depth in the weeks ahead, but a good starting point for this discussion is an article I wrote and have used for many years in my teaching entitled, “Guidelines for Cross Cultural Business Ethics”.  It was recently republished on the BAM Review (The BAM Review) by The BAM Think Tank.

Living and coaching ethically in any culture requires us to continually study the text, the culture and understand thoroughly our own context.  I’d encourage you to read this in its entirety but focus on the ‘starter kit’ section (A basic ‘starter kit’ of questions to consider when facing ethical decisions) and stay tuned for deeper drill downs in future blogs regarding making ethical decisions in our business development abroad:

Guidelines for Cross Cultural Business Ethics

Larry W. Sharp, Director of Training, IBEC Ventures

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