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The Stone that Resists Fire: Warming the Corporate Soul - corporate governance principles


Extract: Most corporations espouse good corporate governance, ethics and values. Few have entrenched these so that they are lived spontaneously and consistently. Take integrity for example. It is seen to be very necessary, yet a prevalent notion amongst leaders and managers is that displaying integrity or doing what is right for the business, are sometimes in conflict. It’s ‘either/or’ instead of ‘and/both’ thinking. Warmth versus cold, calculating. And all too often a false choice is to abandon integrity. This is borne out by an extensive survey reported by IMD recently: “Our results suggest that both bosses and direct reports judge managers’ effectiveness by their ability to get their job done, not by their integrity. We wanted to unveil the shocking result of this research. However, this in no way means that unethical behavior is a good idea or that integrity does not matter in general”.

Using a metaphor based on a true story - the stone that resists fire – this article promotes three pillars of corporate responsibility in order that firms can get from the fluff to the real stuff, and warm the corporate soul.


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