Apparently, unethical behavior that results in poor communication in different organizations occurs on daily basis. Askew et al. (2015) asserts that observation of ethical behavior is one of the most important aspects within the organization as it determines success and improves the performance. Indeed, unethical communication is very important in different organizations as it leads to various adverse effects. For instance, it may lead to financial losses, reduction of the organizational performance, unsafe environment, and customer loss.
Therefore, it is highly imperative for organizations to understand why unethical communication occurs and how it can be curbed. It is evident that deeper conceptualization and understanding of causes of unethical communication is highly important for bolstering the success of the organization. There are a number of factors that are associated with strengthening the ethical communication within the organization. First of all, the employees within the organization are expected to exhibit good moral qualities that would promote good interpersonal communication within the organization. Furthermore, it is worth noting that various countries adhere to different organizational norms that determine the direction of the ethical communication. On the other hand, the business ethics is deemed important especially in determining the organizational standards and guidelines during the decision making process. Therefore, there must be established certain guidelines and standards that would determine whether people will take into account and uphold the principles of ethical communication. Effective ethical communication is an important requirement that determines the general success of the organization. Therefore, current paper will evaluate the viewpoints of various authors who have tried to define the concept of ethical practices and communication and the ways in which they affect various organizational aspects such as the performance. Therefore, these works will be compared and contrasted to evaluate which ones are in favor or against the discussed issues, and which ones are neutral concerning the studied topic.
Evaluation of Various Research Works Concerning the Ethical and Unethical Communication in the Corporate World
According to Trevino, Weaver, and Reynolds (2006), behavioral ethics is also very important as it defines the future of an organization. Therefore, ethical management grounded on individual basis is very important as it defines how effective people communicate with each other. Some of the key factors that are observed to guarantee effective communication are business ethics, critical decision making, moral judgment, moral awareness, and ethical behaviors (Trevino et al., 2006). Unethical communication has led to adverse effects such as increased propensity of scandalous activities. Such vices may be witnessed in organizations in all directions such as in business sphere, in sports, and in the sphere of religion. As such, the majority of the organizations have developed more interest in trying to study unethical and ethical behaviors that may take place in the process of providing services (Trevino et al., 2006). As a result, the stakeholders from such organizations as government and the local communities exerted more pressure in terms of their management of employees' communication. Much emphasis is placed on monitoring increasingly improved ethical behaviors among the employees of an organization. At this juncture, they are emphasizing on reducing unethical and illegal conduct among the workers of an organization. Such measures would reduce the propensity of developing negative communication among the employees within an organization (Trevino et al., 2006). Furthermore, such organizations have embarked on studying the major causes of unethical behavior in the organizations. Derivation of such information is deemed significant especially in making useful and informative decisions about managing ethical behaviors of the organization. Trevino et al. (2006) point out that language is one of the factors that affect the organizational ethics. The organizational ethical behavior is affected in multifaceted ways. Individuals have to go through such process as creation of awareness, judgment, and development of the ability to motivate others. As such, communication is deemed as an important binding factor of all these aspects. The current paper is similar to those of Bello and Mihelic, Lipi?nik, and Tekav?i? as they consider ethical communication to be ineffective in most organizations.
Mihelic et a.l (2010) considers that ethical leadership is an important component as far as bolstering better communication is concerned. In fact, leaders that behave in an ethical way always ponder on continuing consequences, benefits, and drawbacks that are imposed on the organization (Mihelic et al., 2010). They are usually alarmed about the state of fairness, assumption of responsibility, and instances of respect and humbleness. As such, these leaders have to set excellent ethical standards, while at the same time stick to them. Furthermore, unethical morals and communication are thought to result in failure of the organization's performance. Nonetheless, the corporate managers have found themselves at the receiving end where they receive most of the blames. Leadership legitimacy is usually doubted whenever the public trust runs low. As a result, there are increased concerns about the "ethical consciousness" of the organization governed by such leaders. As such, leaders are expected to show good ethical communication skills to increase the level of confidence among the junior employees (Mihelic et al., 2010). Moreover, the move will strengthen the development of morals of such employees within the organization. It is imperative to note that upholding of excellent ethics is an aspect that is so much integrated with leadership and management of organizations (Mihelic et al., 2010). Therefore, the manager's behavior such as the communication skills is highly important for trying to define the general culture of the organization and its corporate climate. Provision of the correct leadership enhances the establishment of better ethics in the organization. Good ethics enhances effective communication within the organization, which is an aspect that good leadership is supposed to advocate for (Mihelic et al., 2010). In brief, good leadership is an important aspect that organization must adhere to so as to enhance its effectiveness in the long run. In most cases, leaders play a key role when it comes to defining the future success of the organization. As such, any program oriented towards enhancing the ethical communication within an organization should especially take into consideration the leadership aspect of the organization.
Bello (2012) is another scholar who thinks that ethical leadership is an important aspect that bolsters the job performance of employees within an organization. According to Bello (2012), there has been proliferation of unethical behavior and practices within the corporate world despite there being an increased research on how ethical behavior can be improved. In most cases, the corporate leaders are blamed for the increased manifestation of such behavior. They continue to engage in leadership mismanagement practices, thus, lowering the level of confidence and trust the junior employees have. As a result, the breakdown in ethical communication between the corporate leadership and the subjects has led to increased mistrust between different subjects within the organization (Bello, 2012). As such, corporate leaders are expected to have a strong character. They should serve their roles with diligence so as to promote effective communication among the organization's employees (Bello, 2012). There are some important features the corporate leaders must possess during the process of boosting ethical behavior and communication within the organizations. Two of the most important features are commitment and trust as they enhance the process of integration and at the same time improve the overall performance of employees. Furthermore, they improve the ethical leadership among the corporate managers making them perform their duties in a more efficient manner (Bello, 2012). Therefore, it is clear that ethical leadership is something that is highly important especially in helping improve the ethical communication among the employees within the same organization. In fact, unethical leadership means that there would be increased communication breakdown among other departments within the organization. As a result of the communication crisis, there would be increased vices such as eruption of corporate scandals (Bello, 2012). Therefore, ethical leadership is a highly critical issue that must be taken into account in case an organization wants to improve the overall performance of the organization. There is no doubt that such organizations must be able to observe the ethical leadership aspect if they are determined to improve their performance.
Mohamad (2010) holds similar position that ethical communication is to be blamed for the organization's underperformance. According to the scholar, multinational companies find it hard to define the set of practices that can be used to define their ethical values. One of the most critical issues is that they operate in different environment where the same practice is observed under different angles. As such, it is highly imperative to understand what the term ethical relativism means and how it can be applied in such organization (Mohamad, 2010). The use of innovative technologies is important as it helps reshape ethical communication between employees from diverse cultural backgrounds. They must understand that absolute truth does not exist; truth exists only in a cultural context. Therefore, organizations must accept that culture is one of the most important components that can be used to define ethical behavior and communication. For instance, they must consider various aspects that are deemed important in defining the moral aspects of community within which the organization operates (Mohamad, 2010). Nonetheless, rejection of ethical relativism will lead to a number of troubles in the respective organization (Mohamad, 2010). Therefore, such organizations must be ready to ensure the existence of the observed ethical aspect in the society they operate in. The move will enable them maintain ethical communication throughout all branches. However, there are some aspects that should be upheld disregarding the region the organization operates in. For instance, they should uphold the aspect of gender equality as it is one of the global agenda and all communities appear to be advocating for it being upheld globally (Mohamad, 2010). As such, observation of ethical relativism will improve the communication of different branches of the organization in a manner that will enhance the general performance of the organization. On the other hand, upholding of such aspect will ensure the organization reduces the threat of disastrous mistakes that can undermine its overall performance (Mohamad, 2010).
Singh and Twalo (2015) assert that lack of proper management skills of unethical behavior is one of the reason workplaces have diminishing productivity. Indeed, mismanagement of the unethical behavior within the organization is something that is highly detrimental for the growth of the organization. There are some unethical behaviors that may take place within the organization as a result of poor and unethical communication between different departments. These include greed, antisocial behavior, company's assets abuse, and corruption (Singh & Twalo, 2015). In most cases, unethical communication between workers of the corporate structure leads to poor adherence to the set of ethic policies and guidelines. Furthermore, they disregard the ethical code, which leads to increased chances of the organization failing to achieve its objectives (Singh & Twalo, 2015). As such, the corporate world should come up with a set of rules and guidelines that can be used to improve the level of ethical communication within the organization. Nonetheless, the process of improving the ethical behavior and communication within the organization should not be solely left to the employees and their managers. A comprehensive culture should be established as this will help create a distinction between unethical and ethical behaviors. As such, the ethical communication will be improved leading to improved effectiveness of the corporate management process (Singh & Twalo, 2015). The managers will be able to respond to, prevent and detect any unethical behavior that employees might show. It is imperative to understand the unethical behavior portrayed by employees within the organization that can affect the reputation of the whole organization. As a result, such an organization will not be able to provide services in an effective manner. Furthermore, unethical behavior causes harm to and undermines human relations among employees working within the same organization (Singh & Twalo, 2015). As such, mismanagement of this vice is deemed a significant factor that also contributes to the use of unethical communication (Singh & Twalo, 2015). In the end, the organization performance will also be affected as the unethical practices and communication generally affect the normal progress and improved performance of the organization.
According to Seals, ethical communication may take a positive turn when it comes to service industry. Seals (2013) asserts that ethical perspective is one of the most important factors that is being observed especially in organization such as Service Corporation. In fact, this is one of the sectors where the concept of ethical behavior has been greatly investigated leading to improved moral intensity (Seals, 2013). Furthermore, such organizations have improved ethical communication, thus, leading to improved performance level of the service organizations in general. It is imperative to note that service industry is deemed as one of the most dominating sectors in the global economy (Seals, 2013). In fact, it is developing at a very high speed, thus, making certain managerial skills especially important. For instance, one of the factors that have been deemed important in the management process is the need to develop a system of ethical communication (Seals, 2013). Effective observation of ethical practices and communication skills has enabled the service sector realize and implement proper managerial skills. For instance, they are able to restructure, reinvent, reorganize, outsource and downsize their management processes so as to improve the productivity (Seals, 2013). Apart from that, service industry uses such ethical communication to control processes that are uncalled for such as the emergence of corporate scandals, inflation and political intrigues. On the other hand, the industry ensures that upholding of the ethical culture helps to uphold the fair trade, recycling and medical testing. Members of the service industry deeply understand the meaning and importance of maintaining the relations they have with their esteemed customers. They understand that creation of such environment can improve the level of service delivery within such organizations (Seals, 2013). It is important to note that customer satisfaction as well as dissatisfaction is realized whenever the customers and the frontline employees interact. Effective interaction calls for improved ethical communication to facilitate a mutual agreement platform (Seals, 2013). As a result, upholding of the ethical behavior and communication is depicted as one of the most important aspects that greatly contribute towards the success of the service industry (Seals, 2013). Here, they have made sure that the universally accepted ethical communication and principles are applied to meet the potential customers' expectations.
According to the Umphress, Mitchell, and Bingham (2010), there is a connection between the "unethical pro-organizational behavior" and the organizational identification. Such identification is highly imperative especially in defining unethical behaviors that can lead to various benefits, which can be obtained by the organization (Umphress et al., 2010). Furthermore, they increase the level of a positive connection between the two factors leading to the improvement of ethical practices within the organization. Furthermore, such a connection is deemed important especially when trying to improve the ethical communication within the organization. Furthermore, it is evident that employees that adhere to high reciprocity beliefs have an ability to adopt "pro-organizational behavior." In this case, they usually have very high anticipation of the future reward that may be obtained as a result of improved organizational performance (Umphress et al., 2010). It is worth mentioning the numerous accounting scandals that have occurred in addition to the collapse of well-established companies have led to the change of the corporate landscape. The matter has been exacerbated by the presence of unethical acts that eventually lead to unethical communication (Umphress et al., 2010). When they keep on flourishing, they end up disrupting the normal performance of the organization. There are a number of reasons why employees have been thought to be engaged in unethical acts, which eventually leads to communication breakdown. The most common fact about their behavior is that the desire to benefit them surpasses that of improving the organizational performance (Umphress et al., 2010). Furthermore, such employees develop unethical communication skills that can end up harming the whole organization, including coworkers. Therefore, it is clear that the benefits unethical acts have are highly significant especially in trying to determine the level of efficiency that exists when analyzing the organizational performance. However, the bottom line is the fact that the unethical behavior is first perpetuated and exacerbated by the employees' indulgence in unethical communication (Umphress et al., 2010). Therefore, the organization should first think over the methods it can use to improve the interpersonal communication among the employees.
Corporate social responsibility is an aspect that is deemed to contribute a lot towards upholding the ethical communication. Carroll and Shabana (2010) assert that corporate social responsibility improves the level of communication between different stakeholders of an organization. In the contemporary world, it is highly imperative for an organization to accept the principle of corporate social responsibility (Carroll & Shabana, 2010). First, there must be ethical communication to ensure that policies, practices and activities concerning corporate social responsibility are effectively implemented. Furthermore, improved CSR ensures that important corporate factors such as handling of the finances are conducted in a proper and an effective manner (Carroll & Shabana, 2010). On the other hand, businesses are considered to use ethical communication skills whenever they engage in the CSR. First, they have to interact with the immediate community to ensure that some of the benefits are passed to this group of people (Carroll & Shabana, 2010). Moreover, the organization is supposed to interact with the community to effectively take care of the environment. All these are processes that require the organization to develop an effective working procedure with the potential stakeholders. It is definitely prompted to improve its ethics when communicating with their stakeholders (Carroll & Shabana, 2010). It is a worldwide known fact that businesses have got an integral role to play. They must be involved in various charitable activities, as well as environmental conservation projects to be deemed as one of the socially responsible organizations. As a result, they are forced to embrace ethical means of carrying out most of their activities. Furthermore, they must observe both the socially ethical practices at both local and international levels. The move helps to ensure that they are able to abide by the set rules and guidelines (Carroll & Shabana, 2010). Moreover, they should be able to abide by the rules expected by the society to be deemed as responsible organizations. As a result, they are compelled to improve their social communication so as to confound to the set guidelines. Therefore, corporate social responsibility has become an effective tool that enhances the process of integration between many organizations and their stakeholders.
Spirituality is a matter that has long contributed for the upholding of the ethical communication. Nonetheless, in the recent past, it has taken a backstage especially due to the establishment of diverse workforce. McGhee and Grant (2008) affirm spirituality is an important factor that describes the ethical behavior within the organization. Nonetheless, the religious clause authenticity in defining the ethical background in the workplace is usually doubted especially in the contemporary world (McGhee & Grant, 2008). There has been increased secularism and many organizations globally have started detaching themselves from any religious affiliation so as to respect liberty of each and every employee (McGhee & Grant, 2008). Nevertheless, the connection that exists between the work and the religion is not something new. For many decades, people have interpreted various work ethics through the use of religious clauses and beliefs. Furthermore, the Christian religion is believed to have been the foundation of most of these ethics (McGhee & Grant, 2008). However, the improved globalization has seen people from different races, cultural and religious backgrounds work together in the same organization. Therefore, the majority of the organizations, especially the multinational ones, have found it hard to continue clinging on the religious clamor yet their workforces are diverse. Therefore, the definition of ethical communication has taken a completely different direction away from the traditional one. In most cases, it is defined on the basis of secularism without taking any side and disregarding the religious affiliation. Currently, workplace ethics and communication practices are drawn from the wider socio-cultural aspect based on the global perspective (McGhee & Grant, 2008). The role of an individual based on his/her religious affiliation is slowly waning. Nevertheless, there are certain religious beliefs and principles that provide guidelines for both practices and communication. For instance, it is highly common for many organizations to be forced to conform to the Islamic principles. Organizations are forced to ensure their products conform to the Islamic principles about "halal" products. Furthermore, organizations that are operating within the Jewish state are expected to adhere to the "kosher" principles when manufacturing their products. Thus, it is an undeniable fact that religious principles still play a major role in defining ethical communication and practices within the organizations. However, spirituality plays a prominent role in defining the ethical principles of communication within an organization in case it is situated in an area that has only one religion.
Increased competition in an industry is a causative agent of poor ethics practices and communication at workplaces. Zinczuk, Cichorzewska, and Walczewski (2013) proclaim that unfair competition, as well as arduous market situation temps organizations and their employees to engage in unethical practices. They end up violating the ethical practices to ascribe to the need of making gaining profits. On the other hand, the majority of the organizational employees remain fully aware of the unethical behavior they exhibit. Despite this, they usually keep it low to make it hard for the supervisors to realize. According to the majority of the respondents, they deem the industry to be the area where elimination of unethical behavior can take place (Zinczuk et al., 2013). They also deem it to be the place where restoration of ethical behavior can take place. The majority of the employees, however, believe that respect for others and environment is highly important in trying to define ethical issues in the industry. To have effective ethical background, there must be established an ethical communication. Apart from that, they are quick to note that companies embracing good communication procedures integrate the principle of being honest. Honesty is a very important aspect as far as ethical communication is concerned. It improves the reputation of the respective organization. Furthermore, employees that are honest hasten the process of success of the entire organization (Zinczuk et al., 2013). However, the main determinants of the ethical practices at the workplace and communication are the managers and the owners of the company. In fact, upholding such values is very important in determining the level of corporate responsibility the organization has assumed. Ethical communication constitutes the employer's and staff's obligations (Zinczuk et al.,2013). In this case, such principles are meant to define the social norms and legal principles that define the value of the company. Briefly, these social principles act as the guidelines of ethical communication within the organization.
Success in different organizations is influenced by different factors that define ethical perspectives in different organizations. For instance, one of the professional organizations that depend a lot on the upholding of ethical values is called the accountancy (Idris, 2011). However, this field has been marred with various cases of unethical practices that threaten the overall existence of the organization in the long run. Different accounting organizations have various unethical reports about the growing concerns of malpractices that are conducted by the auditing and accounting professionals. Such reports have immense impact in terms of defining ethical practices of different organizations especially in such matters as communication (Idris, 2011). The accountants may be very much willing to portray their work from various ethical perspectives. On the other hand, it is imperative to note that unethical practices are highly despised in the accounting sector. Despite this, they are highly rampant in the sector especially due to the increased propensity in financial matters. As such, most of the accounting bodies have designed a set of accounting principles that can be used to define the manner in which ethical communication is upheld. There is a set of behaviors which all accountants are expected to follow to be deemed as operating in the right manner. Unethical behavior and communication are totally unacceptable in the accounting field (Idris, 2011). Nonetheless, the manner in which they are defined varies especially based on the expectations of the contemporary world. For instance, accountants have been given a more integral role according to which they are expected to communicate freely with the organizational management in a transparent manner. Furthermore, they are supposed to demonstrate a high level of ethical conduct when communicating with the stakeholders of the organization (Idris, 2011). Demonstrating a high level of ethical conduct is imperative especially in trying to instill confidence in the stakeholders. Furthermore, their roles are deemed to be vital especially in defining the future success of the company. Accountants are very important as they define how the successful company's accounts can be operated for long run benefits in terms of profitability. Therefore, they must ensure they adhere to ethical principles during the communication process to depict a high level of transparency.
The ethical and unethical communication is a very important aspect as far as enhanced success of the corporate world is concerned. As it has been identified, ineffective management of the communication process can lead to organizational failure in terms of performance. Therefore, many organizations are usually highly alerted to ensure they keep to good ethical behavior and promote good interpersonal communication. Trevino et al. (2006) asserts that behavioral ethics is highly important in trying to define the future of an organization. Therefore, it is imperative to create a good managerial plan for the organizational ethics as the move will bolster ethical communication. On the other hand, ethical leadership has been identified as one of the major components that define the effectiveness of the ethical communication (Mihelic et al., 2010). The leaders are the people who are in charge of defining various management process and set of rules and guidelines that are used within an organization. Therefore, they tend to discourage unethical morals, which are considered to be the main reason for the organization to underperform. Therefore, the concept of leadership legitimacy must be taken into account in case the organization is to ensure an effective and ethical communication within the corporate or business environment.
Some professionals such as the accounting workers are highly sensitive to ethical communication and practices. Various corporate sectors are affected by the proliferation of unethical communication, which is propagated by the unethical practices. One of the sectors that are highly affected by the presence of the unethical behaviors is the services sector (Seals, 2013). In fact, this is one of the sectors where ethical behavior is widespread. As a result, the moral intensity here is improved. Furthermore, observation of such moral and ethical issues has also improved the general ethical communication between stakeholders and officials of the service industry. On the other hand, one of the factors that have helped to maintain positive ethical practices and communication is the corporate social responsibility. In this case, the organizations have ensured they maintain a good corporate social responsibility to enhance the process of communication between the organization and the stakeholders. As such, the policies, practices, and activities have been effectively implemented thus, leading to the improved ethical background. Nonetheless, one of the issues that have assumed neutral grounds as far as ethical communication is concerned is the matters related with spirituality. The issue of spirituality has been sidelined especially in the contemporary world where the workplaces are increasingly becoming diverse (Carroll & Shabana, 2010). The organizations need to integrate the stakeholders in various programs they carry out as part of letting them enjoy some of their benefits. For instance, the corporate world needs to get engaged in charitable activities, as well as contribute immensely towards environmental rehabilitation. In order to ensure smooth flow of all these processes, it is required to adopt ethical ways of communication. However, one of the sectors that highly depend on the evaluation of its success is the accountancy field. All accountants are expected to behave in a socially and professionally ethical manner. Furthermore, they are expected to endorse ethical communication skills to create transparency. In short, ethical communication is a very important aspect that is used to define the general success of the organizations in terms of their performance. However, different organizations have different ways of defining it based on cultural and geographical backgrounds. Despite this, such aspects as corporate social responsibility are universally accepted as ways of defining ethical communication.