“The ethics brochure is a popularisation of Elkem’s ethical guidelines, which were drawn up in 2006. The brochure applies to every employee and is intended to serve as a dynamic guide to ethical practices. Managers have a particular responsibility for putting ethics on the agenda. The brochure and other presentation material have been designed to serve as tools for this purpose,” relates HR Director Karin Aslaksen.
The title “Thanks for Telling Me!” originated in HSE activities at Elkem Lista, where employees are urged to let colleagues know if they are doing their work in a way that is not compliant with Elkem’s work safety standards.
Elkem encourages dialogue and hopes that all its employees have the moral courage to take up difficult subjects and ethical dilemmas with their colleagues or immediate superior.
“The ethics brochure is intended to inspire employees to make good decisions for Elkem. We are dependent on the trust of other people: customers, investors, employees and authorities. A good reputation is worth its weight in gold. Good business practices strengthen our competitiveness,” Aslaksen points out.
Facilitating ethics training
There is focus on ethics and dilemma training in Elkem’s management and human resource development programmes. And the Group HR department recently introduced a new training programme for sales personnel in Düsseldorf and Russia.
“But the line manager himself must raise his colleagues’ awareness of ethics and carry out dilemma training in his own unit,” emphasises Aslaksen.
“We think the programme was very useful – there is not enough time for soft values in day-to-day work. The ethics brochure highlights the importance of dialogue. Sales staff work very independently and in their everyday jobs have few local colleagues with whom they can discuss dilemmas,” says Karl-Heinz Prange, Director of Sales, Europe.