The key tenet of integrity management is that effective management and compliance systems are not sufficient for buildinging strong and effective organizations. Organizations also need ethical culture, good climate and engaged workforce who feel safe and respected, and who is committed to advance organizational objectives. Noumerous research results prove that shared culture and healthy organizational climate strengthen commitment and enhance the creativity of staff, decrease the mistakes resulting from coordination problems among units, and minimize the fluctuation of staff as well. Many surveys show that the most ethical companies have relatively higer profits and lower labor costs. Investment in organizational culture pays off in business results, and it is a key determinant whether the organization can keep its talented workforce.
Managers are, in most cases, prepared to develop the technical, administrative and financial systems and procedures of their company. They often call these ‘hard instruments’. Building culture and ethics is a different know-how and copmpetence. Different strategies and instruments belong to strengthening the organization’s integrity. That is, to operate the soft instruments. External expertise can help creating the supporting structures, instruments and processes, but the ongoing implementation is the task of the company’s leaders and managers. They need to understand and stand behind the integrity management system, set an example, establish a respectful and honest climate, as well as effective communication, demonstrate a high level of emotional intelligence and, with all that, influence the daily operation and ethical business practices.