Work ethics are the sets of values and moral principles including integrity, fairness and responsibility that people apply in their job. An ethically fit person is less prone to corruption traps and more likely to gain the trust of employer, customers and colleagues.

Take the challenge now and check your ethical fitness level. It's never too late to get in shape!

1. You attend the contractor's annual dinner and win a new smart phone in the lucky draw and its value far exceeds the company's approved limit. Would you report the gift to the company?

2. You are involved in a recruitment exercise which your brother has also applied for the position. Knowing that the competition is keen, he asks you to reveal the interview questions. Would you help him out?

3. Your line manager is a great mentor of yours. One day, you discover that the supplier he recommends to the tender board in a recent large project is in fact owned by himself. Would you report it to the company?

4. You join a company and find that it is a company norm that colleagues inflate their claims for travel allowance. Your teammate advises you to follow suit. Would you follow his advice?

5. You are desperate to meet the sales quota this month. The procurement manager of your client hints that you have to offer him rebate for closing the deal. Would you accede to his request?

6. Knowing that you are in financial difficulties, your colleague offers you a loan to settle your debts but requests you to turn a blind eye to his taking up side jobs during work hours. Would you accept his offer?

Oops! You are skating on thin ice! It seems that you are a person of loose principles who is indecisive in making up one's mind and too concerned about the perception of other people. When encountering ethical dilemmas, you can only perceive the immediate consequences sometimes but fail to make proper judgement from different and long-term perspectives. You need to learn how to make objective judgement calls and to adhere to positive values.

Good try! You are on the right track but could be better! You are a somewhat prudent person who will not casually commit any breaches just for small advantages. However, you may sometimes turn a blind eye to irregularities, showing that you cannot always stick to your principles or follow regulations. If only you can be more cautious when making ethical judgements, you will be looked upon as an employee worthy of trust.

Bravo! You should be proud of yourself! You are an upright and honest person who will not give up your principles for personal benefits, nor will you drift with the tide. You can still uphold your principles even when faced with temptations. Keep up with the good work and be an ethical role model in your workplace.

The Hong Kong Business Ethics Development Centre of the ICAC developed the Ethics plus Model, which is an ethical decision making tool for resolving ethical dilemmas at work. Check out our related webpage for more details!

The Work Ethics Fitness Challenge aims at increasing your awareness of the common ethical risks and the importance of ethics at work. Its contents are for educational and informational purposes only. It is not intended to be any scientific analysis on personality or understood as a substitute for professional consultation to deal with corruption issues that may arise in any given situation. Users should refer to the original legislations or seek legal advice as and when necessary.

Copyright © 2020 Hong Kong Business Ethics Development Centre. All rights reserved.

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Last update: 2020-10-08