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Ethical operations raise even SMEs to the top
2017 / 12 / 20
Home > News > Ethical operations raise even SMEs to the top

Ethical operations raise even SMEs to the top

Following the large enterprise sector, operating ethically is becoming increasingly important for small and medium-sized enterprises, too. These companies not only take into account the interests of their clients and suppliers but also those of their environment and employees. They set an example by their activity and attitude and strengthen trust. This attitude may constitute a basis for long-term operation and economic stability, and what is more, employees of the Y and Z generations are more eager to opt for an ethically operating workplace.

It is a global trend that, apart from consumers, employees become increasingly conscious, and prefer products and services offered by ethical companies and, if possible, to work at such places. Various analyses emphasise it: ethical operation forms the basis of a sustainable economy. CSR activities, namely integrating corporate social responsibility into the operating model, appeared in Hungary in the early 2000 s, initially mainly in the large enterprise sector. Back then, this mostly meant support, sponsorship and community involvement, then the importance of an ethical corporate culture came to the forefront. By now, ethics and transparency are linked: to be successful, even a profit-oriented business has to take into account the expectations of the environment and the social groups it is connected to. Social cooperation and sustainability came to the forefront rather than the attitude of riding roughshod over everything.
The importance of ethical operation is raised more and more frequently for small and medium-sized businesses. For example, this year the Budapest LAB Business Development Centre launched a long-term research programme on Hungarian businesses. Its first results show that, based on self-declaration, 71.4 per cent of companies consider themselves responsible and ethical on a five-point scale. Fifty-six per cent of companies have introduced measures aiming to protect the environment and 55 per cent of them support a kind of social purpose or organisation. However, a loyal atmosphere, cooperation, support for local initiatives, education, satisfied partner and customer relations, fair taxation and transparent legal processes may also be pillars of ethical operation.
The construction industry might be the least typical place in which ethical operation can be one of the most important goals upon a company’s foundation. Károly Lovász, Managing Director of KAV Hungária Kft, engaged in the design, manufacture and installation of aluminium closing systems, glass walls and sun shades, has been in the construction industry for nearly 20 years. In his opinion, an ethical business model ensures that a company is not just alive in the sector for two to three years and operates as a classic money-making company but rather as a genuine, value certain and value adding business. And this is based on meeting promises. “If we undertake something at KAV, we always meet it, whether a financial commitment or a promise to a client. We operate in the family home sphere and thus we deal with private individuals rather than with companies; in this environment this model may even operate better. Our clients do not seek a product but expertise and service. They want a contractor who they can trust to the maximum. Our clients are able to get us to replace a glass even after many years. I believe the unique moral values we follow and our customers appreciate are the secret of our current success.”
Whatever the size of the company or business, today it is important to keep in mind that, alongside profit generation, integrity, sustainability and corporate responsibility must receive a prominent role in the operating model if we want to create the image of a genuinely successful, example-setting company that is also attractive to workers.

Author
Magócsi Anikó
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