"The truth of the matter is that you always know the right thing to do. The hard part is doing it." Norman Schwarzkopf
A challenge to the truism that good people always finish last has come from a most unlikely place-recently downsized, publicly traded US corporations.
The Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 requires new disclosures for officers and directors of publicly traded companies. Controls regarding securities fraud, criminal and civil penalties for violating the securities laws, blackouts for insider trades of pension fund shares, and the protections for corporate whistleblowers have become forefront in the Acts creation of safeguarding the general public’s rights.
It is far too easy to get caught up in our own perspectives, careers, and day-to-day activities that we don't see alternatives to the problems we face. Instead, we continue to follow traditional approaches, even when they are obviously inadequate.
The common argument is that Ethics, Morals, or Values are personal. Many believe that also that the decision for our actions must come from within us. Quite often absolute standards are brought into question in regards to ethics, and this is my response :
There are two forms of controls in an organization: internal and external. Internal controls directly relate to corporate governance, business ethics, managerial structure, compensation, internal council and whistle blowers.