Give me examples of ethical business policies
August 1, 2018 6:47 PM   Subscribe

Following up on my previous "How do encourage my company to decline unethical business?" question, I'm in search of examples of concrete policies.

I'm interested both in policies that describe what sort of behaviors or policies would disqualify an organization as a customer and well as lists of bad actors maintained by trusted third parties. Or if there are other approaches I haven't considered, I'm interested in that too.

In other words: if an organization decides it wants to make the ethics of its customers part of deciding who it does business with, how can that be put into practice?
posted by Cogito to Work & Money (7 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite

The companies who do this the most tend to be values based (i.e., they're more governed by a Vision and Values than by policy.) You can look at Patagonia, Schindler, Starbucks, IKEA for a number of examples.
posted by frumiousb at 7:10 PM on August 1, 2018

It's worth checking out JUST Capital's methodology (and rankings).
posted by rdn at 7:49 PM on August 1, 2018

This is the IKEA Code of Conduct-- IWay.
posted by frumiousb at 7:51 PM on August 1, 2018

The Co-op Bank in the UK has a good example of an ethical policy I think. (Disclosure: I used to work for them a long time ago.) They refuse banking services to tobacco companies, anyone involved in arms or fossil fuels etc. The policy is downloadable here:
posted by churlishmeg at 12:44 AM on August 2, 2018

Doctors Without Borders has a pretty robust exclusion list for industries they don't accept money from here. They also routinely turned down donations from companies that had other ethical issues. I know, because I was largely responsible for researching and assessing corporate donors and prospects for 9 years.

MSF did use a third party who kept reports on major companies related to their involvement in specific industries, as well as labor, marketing and other areas of potential bad behavior. It was not free (and the name escapes me at the moment). I also did general research online.
posted by kimdog at 5:43 AM on August 2, 2018

I used to work for The Body Shop, way back before it was swallowed up by L'Oreal.
The Body Ship paid us to volunteer at a soup kitchen on a monthly basis. Loved that!

In a bid to get so many damn cars off the streets, some local companies pay for their worker's monthly bus passes. This should be a more wide-spread practice than it is.
posted by BostonTerrier at 7:48 AM on August 2, 2018

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