An Authentic Governance Model (2)
TOWARDS Ethical Excellence Following up on our previous article, we continue to describe Dr. Rampersad’s authentic governance model consists of four phases, which are the building blocks of sustainable corporate governance. We continue here with stage 2:
2. Alignment with yourself; corporate governance will be cosmetic if personal integrity is not a way of life in your organization and if you focus mainly on ethical procedures, formal regulations, and guidelines. Therefore it’s needed to align your personal ambition with your behavior and your way of acting. So you need to commit yourself to live and act according to your personal ambition and to keep promises that you make to yourself. Personal governance built on the person’s true character is sustainable and strong. You should reflect your true self and must adhere to a moral and behavioral code set down by your personal ambition. This means that who you really are, what you care about, and your passions should come out in your personal ambition, and you should act and behave accordingly (you should be yourself) to build trust. This inner alignment is an important step towards lasting personal growth and reinforcing integrity, honesty, trustworthiness, credibility, transparency, and personal charisma. People with this perspective on life value others’ lives and create a stable basis for others to feel they are credible, truthful, and trustworthy.
3. Authentic Corporate Governance:
a) Corporate ambition; this phase involves defining and formulating the shared corporate ambition. The corporate ambition is the soul, core intention and the guiding principles of the organization and encompasses the corporate mission, vision, and core values.
b) Corporate Balanced Scorecard (CBS); the corporate ambition has no value unless you don’t take actions to make it a reality. Therefore the emphasis in this stage is developing an integrated and well balanced action plan based on the corporate ambition to realize the corporate objectives. The CBS is needed to improve the business and governance processes continuously based on the corporate ambition in order to add value to customers and satisfy them.
c) Corporate governance; the next step is to implement, maintain, and cultivate the corporate ambition and CBS in order to govern your organization effectively, to deliver peak performance, and to create competitive advantage. This entails corporate governance: the systematic process of continuous, gradual and routine corporate improvement, steering, and learning. This stage focuses also on the implementation of formal corporate regulations, procedures and guidelines (corporate governance code). To operate in accordance with the corporate ambition and related CBS, through its implementation using the PDAC cycle, results in a journey towards sustainable and ethical business success.
4. Alignment with your organization; the emphasis here is aligning personal ambition with corporate ambition and
creating uniformity of personal and organizational values. By unifying corporate ethics with individual ethics you will create a strong foundation of peace, integrity, engagement, and learning upon which creativity and growth can flourish, and life within the organization will become a more harmonious and ethical experience. You will also attract and retain the most talented employees. It’s about aligning personal governance with corporate governance and getting the optimal fit and balance between these two activities in order to enhance labour productivity, to create a climate of trust, and to stimulate engagement, commitment, integrity, and passion in the organization. This alignment process is needed because staff members don’t work with devotion or expend energy on something they do not believe in or agree with. If there is an effective match between their interests and those of the company, and if their values and the company’s values align, they will be engaged and will work with greater commitment and dedication towards realizing the company objectives. When the personnel’s personal ambition is in harmony with their company’s (are compatible) and combined in the best interest of both parties, the results will be higher productivity and sustainable corporate governance. Employees are stimulated in this way to commit, act ethically and focus on those activities that create value for clients. This will create a strong foundation of peace, personal integrity, and stability upon which creativity and growth can flourish, and life within the organization will become a more harmonious experience.
Matching the Personal Ambition with the Corporate Ambition
The effective combination of all these four phases creates a stable basis for high performance employees and a high performance organization. To illustrate the importance of this authentic governance model: Of the 140 businesses recognized by theEthisphere Institute as the 2013 World’s Most Ethical Companies, Aflac and Starbucks have received this honour every year between 2007 and 2013.They have been judged to not only have exemplary ethical standards and policies, but also consistently high ethical practices. Their corporate governance codes are not empty words, but represent active coordinates in maintaining an ethical business culture, based on effective values‑based leadership and the alignment of personal governance with corporate governance.
Prof. Hubert Rampersad is President of the Technological University of the Americas and Abiodun Kayode Fawumi is the Publisher of Ekocity Magazine.