Business Ethics in Public Sector
Ethical risk management
Working alongside Federal, State and Local Governments, we design workplace ethics and value initiatives. Under the headings, “Your Professional Obligations as a Government Employee” and “Taking the High Road”. These programs deliver greater employee understanding and engagement of ethical risk management at work. Our programs win high employee engagement because they explain “the why” behind the codes of conduct. Understanding “the why” is a necessary precursor to an individual’s engagement and personal accountability. We have worked with more than 30 government departments and agencies over the last 20 years, and this has been a successful proven technique, time and time again.
A comprehensive Ethics Resources Kit developed on behalf of the Victorian Government has won international recognition. It is now being actively used by 68 agencies in Victoria making it one of the most sustainable employee learning programs in Australia. A community of practitioners has evolved to support the Victorian Government’s Ethics Initiative and this active community is now in its 7th year. Their focus is on promoting greater workforce awareness of the ongoing need to anticipate and manage ethical risks in Victorian workplaces.
Government business enterprises and ethical risk management
The then state owned Networks NSW, incorporating Endeavour Energy, Ausgrid and Essential Energy, developed and rolled out a leader driven ethics training program called “Make the right choice”. This innovative program used realistic DVD based scenarios depicting real-life situations as a platform for the discussion of the ethical implications of decisions made in the workplace. These covered conflicts of interest, bullying and harassment, contractor management, fraud and corruption, safety and procurement. Leaders were trained in how to facilitate an ethical risk training program and supplied with a facilitator’s guide book to assist with roll out. The program was conceived, written and produced by Managing Values.
We have worked alongside many major local government organisations in several states as they seek greater employee engagement with, and adoption of their ‘Codes of Conduct’ and ‘Value Statements’. Clarifying the ethical principles and organisational values that underpin these protocols facilitates greater engagement and more participation of risk management by employees. By appealing to their principles rather than the letter of the law, employees are encouraged to step up to a higher accountability than compliance alone.
We have also conducted several ‘values’ audits and ‘values refresh’ programs. These assist Councils to nurture an inclusive workplace context where employees better understand their roles and their opportunities to be part of an active change program designed to enhance their communities and improve society overall.
Managing Values has also facilitated the leadership training programs for several Councils, presented as keynote speakers for national conferences and written several case studies based on best practices in the public sector. We continue to facilitate LGPRO’s annual emerging leaders program.
We have facilitated the review and envisioning processes for Councillor teams at offsite strategy sessions. This process has involved the following steps:
- Co-design of a 2-day retreat program with key Councillors and Executives
- Interviews with Councillors to identify their needs and desires in relation to the strategic plan and its operations; input from executives and leadership staff identifies their needs vs. their current stated values and principles
- Selected external stakeholder consultations, for input into the strategic planning processes
- A desktop review of the strategic plan in relation to stakeholder’s feedback
- Facilitator of a 2-day planning retreat and final presentation of action plan.
Managerial & employee level
Fraud and risk training.
We take a cultural approach to fraud and risk training, recognising that a compliance approach does not engage the hearts and minds of employees and leaves Councils at risk.
Our strategy includes:
- Implementation of proper guidelines and policies (setting the tone from the top)
- Continuous employee education in cultural and stakeholder risk management and whistle blowing procedures via Fraud Awareness workshops
- Constant identification and prioritisation of fraud risks
- Ongoing evaluation of mitigating controls
- Continuous monitoring.