Last week was the first in a 3 part series on the importance of creating a Code of Conduct. Read last week’s article on How a Code of Conduct Reinforces Accountability HERE. The main concepts are that everyone in the organization needs to create the Code of Conduct and adhere to each agreed rule. If someone breaks the code the entire team is responsible to address this issue with the person who breaks the Code of Conduct.
This week’s article will cover the following topics:
- Knowing the priorities of the Code of Conduct
- The Code of Conduct is the police officer
- What to do when YOU break the Code of Conduct?
Knowing the priorities of the Code of Conduct
1. The code and mission come first
2. The needs of the team come second
3. The needs of the individual come third –
it’s not all about you!
It takes a while to get everyone on the page about these 3 priorities. This is where the pedal meets the metal by making sure that everyone feels empowered to have the tough conversation with those who break the Code of Conduct.
The Code of Conduct is the police officer
The conversation below is one that a client used with a colleague.
“This is not about me attacking you. This is about following the code. We all agreed upon the code. I’m uncomfortable doing this, yet I need to speak to you since it will benefit all of us. It’s not about being mean or blaming you. It’s about sticking to what we decided to do.”
How do you think this conversation went for my client? The good news is that it went very well. Both parties did not judge or criticize in a negative way. If your Code of Conduct is done right, the results will be extremely beneficial. If people start arguing, you know that you need to have more discussions with the entire team.
Discuss what the benefit will be for the person and the team. Thank the person for listening. Give a compliment when the person improves his or her behavior.
What to do when YOU break the Code of Conduct?
- Take a deep breath
- Don’t take it personally
- Acknowledge the person
- Listen without interrupting
- If you made a mistake admit it
- Ask the person how to make it right
Owning our mistakes could even be part of your Code of Conduct! 🙂
Let’s get real about the Code of Conduct
Please listen to me on this one! It takes time to make the Code of Conduct work. There will be naysayers on your team. There may be bullies who feel they can ignore the code. This is where leadership matters. Everyone on the team needs to feel free to communicate with anyone who breaks the Code of Conduct – not just leadership.
Next week I will include what my clients have included in their Code of Conduct.
I want to hear from you
Add a comment to my blog on how you have made a Code of Conduct work in your company. How did you address team members when they broke the Code of Conduct? You will receive a response from me because I enjoy connecting with my readers! 🙂 You are always welcome to send me a private email HERE with concerns that you are experiencing at work.
I will send a copy of my 2nd book – Full Speed Ahead: Become Driven by Change to the first 3 readers who send me a comment or email.
Please share this and any article that speaks to you or your company
Loyal readers like you help us find more people who could benefit from these posts. Help us help them reduce conflict and improve leadership skills and quality of life.
Read the first article in the series on The Importance of a Code of Conduct HERE.
This is Joyce Weiss
Corporate Communication Strategist and Career Coach
Have a great week.
Until next time, Remember…”You Get What You Tolerate!”