ARMSTRONG, ELAYAN: Memo to Gordon Gekko — Ethics, not greed, boost profits

Goodman School of Business faculty members Michael Armstrong and Fayez Elayan co-authored a piece published in The Conversation about the cost of unethical behaviour in the business world.

Armstrong and Elayan write:

Stories involving business ethics appear regularly in the news. Some report good deeds, but most allege scandalous corporate behaviour. While these may seem like examples of businesses choosing money over morals, that’s a false choice. Unethical behaviour is not only embarrassing from a public relations standpoint, it can also be unprofitable for firms and their investors.

One ongoing scandal, both in Canada and the United States, involves banks selling unwanted financial services to their customers. The story began south of the border with Wells Fargo. The bank admitted in September 2016 that thousands of its employees had created more than two million accounts without customer permission.

The problem arose after management set overly aggressive sales targets. Employees felt pressured to open accounts regardless of customer need. Some ex-employees claim they were fired for refusing to play along.

Continue reading the full article here.

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