The Ethical Leadership of Google

Abstract

The Google Company has a success record for many years since its formation and has a reputation for upholding work ethics. The business ethics guide the firm employee’s conduct and determines the appropriate processes or products that are acceptable to society. The leadership of a company has the mandate to ensure that there are suitable activities and has the responsibility of training the employees to have proper conduct to build the reputation of a business and raise productivity. Ethics in the workplace contributes to success and prosperity by preventing wrong things and ensuring adherence to a set code of conduct. The leaders in Google create an environment that upholds maximum ethical practices and promotes good or fair processes. The growth and expansion of businesses require set rules that elaborate on the right and wrong things to ensure a minimal violation of regulations or protocols, thus affecting the business’s performance. The increase in competition and the advances in technology create the need for the managers to closely monitor staff’s inputs and their conduct in providing services to the clients.

Keywords: Google, strategy, leadership, corporate, leaders, ethics, and ethical conduct

 

The Ethical Leadership of Google

Ethics at the workplace is an essential tool that helps an organization achieve its objective and build a positive image. The leadership and the employees who maintain ethical practice contribute to creating a company’s good reputation, thereby attracting and retaining their clients— ethics in business help distinguish the right from the wrong. The performance of the Google Company continuously rises due to its ability to uphold ethical leadership values and ensuring they engage in proper business practices (Sutra, 2017). The Google incorporation ranks top in performance amongst other companies in the information technology industry. Moreover, the increase in competition triggers the need to ensure consistency in understanding and upholding acceptable business practices, thus preventing the legal issues that affect the firm’s output.

Google Corporation

The Google Company has a reputation of established commitment to enforcing ethical trade processes and practices through strong corporate governance that ensures there is adherence to rules. Since its incorporation in 1998, the Google firm has expanded its coverage and services, thus a clear indicator of growth and good performance (Brenkert, 2008). The vision includes providing access to information quickly and positively impacting society by using technology to improve people’s lives. The leadership enhances work ethics and behaviors that empower the employees and guide them in participating in the appropriate activities. The firm’s stakeholders engage in activities that focus on building the reputation and ensuring customer satisfaction through continuous improvement and regular supervision. The Google Company participates in trade activities and also corporate social responsibility acts. The firm has grown and offers a wide array of services, including the web, media, geo feeds, mobile solutions, social networks, and innovation platforms.

The management and leaders in Google continuously cultivate a culture of excellence in conduct and processes to increase productivity and serve the growing number of consumers of their services. Further, the code of leadership incorporates human capital development, managing talents, making things happen, shaping the future, and investing in it. The leaders create rules and regulations that govern the ethical procedures and processes to deliver high-quality services. Moreover, the management monitors the input of the staff in various fields. The increase interactions and online communication create the need to control and assess the information being shared to prevent wrong information or content from being shared or transmitted to the unintended audience (Mihelič, Lipičnik, & Tekavčič, 2010). Managers implement systems that regulate the employees’ communication and activities to prevent damaging the firm’s reputation. Leaders also lead by example, and they serve as symbols to the other staff for them to emulate. Moreover, there established an ethical relationship that exists between the workers and their leaders.

Ethical Leadership

The leadership skills and style in a company has a significant impact on the enterprise ratings and performance in a particular industry. The leader may have a unique character and uphold different work ethics that affect his workers’ relationship. The advances in technology all over the world present an opportunity for the Google Company to increase their services; thus, the leaders employ ethical practices to propel the firm in the different markets (Mihelič, Lipičnik, & Tekavčič, 2010). The individual in a leadership position can implement the business decision in the right manner without violating the procedures or processes.  Also, they ensure there is the simultaneous application of laws across the board to allow equality. The leader has skills that help them give directions and guide the staff, thereby ensuring that the duties are performed on time and appropriately (Sutra, 2017). Another character is the ability to foster greatness and empower people by making the right decision to solve challenging situations.

Further, ethical leadership incorporates valuing creativity and acquisition of the relevant talents or capabilities. Treating employees equally also helps evaluate the process and promotes ethical culture, thus growing creativity and innovation in the diverse fields. Moreover, moral leadership encourages the continued pursuit of passion and gives morale to perform duties better. The individual’s expressed perseverance and the willingness to take calculated risks properly is pursuance of success. The leaders act as the reference point and are mandated to give their followers directions during various scenarios.

An ethical leader ensures that the people conduct themselves and the business processes in the right manner and attempts to establish balance and integrity in the organization. Further, they serve the organization and the staff with dignity and ensure all the stakeholders’ interests are met through the creation of an integrative vision (Weller, 2008). Moreover, they provide there is well-structured communication in the firm through the timely release of information about the activities, plans, and problems relating to the business (Mihelič, Lipičnik, & Tekavčič, 2010). Also, they advocate for creating better solutions to challenges experienced in the organization by applying appropriate procedures. Lastly, they enhance the growth and development of staff through mentoring and training programs.

Corporate Governance

The Google Company strives to offer exceeding ethical leadership to both the stakeholders and the public through corporate social responsibility tasks. The firm applies a holistic approach and ensures that the policies are sound and appropriate for the various scenarios. In some situations, the business uses external auditors’ services to assess and evaluate the processes and rules. Also, they audit the financial records and the various activities conducted by the firm, thereby advising on the best approaches to the issues and the models of sharing sensitive information to the stakeholders (Hernandez, 2017). The process of outsourcing external examiners ensures that the right structures and plans are utilized in the services. Through the CSR action monitoring and audits, the enterprise ensures they participate responsibly in activities that promote the environment and the people without expecting any financial returns (Tan & Tan, 2012).

 

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Engagement with Stakeholders

The Google firm strives to engage in ethical business and leadership through direct connection and communication with the stakeholders. The company ensures direct engagement between the managers, customers, employees, the surrounding community, and any other interested parties. They have formulated consistent and transparent values that help the organization to prioritize its activities and communication for easy understanding and to allow fair contribution (Hernandez, 2017). In some situations, the company applies the open-door policy to attract the employees to participate in decision-making and capture direct feedback. Also, there is annual reporting, frontline customers support, and equal opportunities throughout the business. Moreover, the various management levels are synchronized and organized to allow the stakeholders to communicate smoothly without the creation of any barriers. The integration of the different contributors ensures that ethical conduct is upheld, and there is the application of appropriate leadership traits.

Risk Management and Business Practices

The increase in competition and the growth of the technology calls for ethical leadership in risk management and proper implementation of strategies similar to the case at Google Company. Risk management is treated as a sensitive issue, which helps build and maintain the company’s reputation, thus improving the company image in ethics (Tan & Tan, 2012). Further, the firm has a strategy to manage the fiscal health and ensure the reputation is guarded through serious monitoring of employee’s activities and friendly risk management policies (Hernandez, 2017). Moreover, they apply ethical practices in the administration of finances such as the automated accounting software’s that ensure there are accountability and presentation of facts about the performance. Further, the company honors and respects the employment contracts and agreements, thus promoting social responsibility in the organization. Also, they ensure they keep away from negative media attention, and they abide by their legal obligation to avoid conflicts with the law enforcers.

Human Resource Selection

The employee selection and engagement is enhanced thoroughly to ensure they hire ethical individuals who qualify for job positions. The staff selection process aims at acquiring the right people who possess the appropriate skills and leadership traits to grow the firm and promote a climate of responsibility and ethical behaviors (Hernandez, 2017). The leaders are accountable, dedicated, responsible, consistent at work, and respectful, and this is evident in their approach to issues and their communication styles. There is transparency in interviewing the staff, and they get qualified staff openly. Further, they participate in the training of employees to improve their talents and enhance their skills. The organization also engages in talent hunting and harnessing through programs meant to empower the youths. The empowerment programs that promote computer literacy and science education help teach girls and minority members in the society through fair manner. Also, they recognize and reward the people who exceed the compliance requirements and apply the best practice in the industry relating to work ethics.

Respect for Privacy

The Google Company supports ethical standards in the communication industry and holds ultimate respect for privacy. Ethical practices include separating the private information from the public and ensuring that the details remain confidential. The email communication and other forms of sharing information are protected through a cloud computing technology that stores the customer’s data and allows them to access it when needed. Moreover, they apply various stages of securing the client’s details, including verifying document authenticity and implementing passwords. The firm enhances information safety and creates internal checks and balances to maintain the image or credibility in the industry (Tan & Tan, 2012).

Business Policies

The legal aspects at Google incorporation uphold ethical behaviors and compliance with the law in duty performance. The firm has the right leaders who advocate for the company staff to apply legal practices and avoid rules. The management enforces moral character amongst the employee, and they ensure the business practices are acceptable to conform to the environmental and national laws (Hernandez, 2017). The firm leadership ensures they recruit law-abiding citizens, and they assess their habits to avoid legal suits. The company outsources legal and audit services to guide ethical business practices that are acceptable in a region and correct the wrong acts. The employee’s misconduct is addressed quickly, and punishment is given to the individuals who intentionally break the rules. Moreover, there are procedures for dealing with disputes and crisis management to prevent internal issues from being known by the public. The code of conduct and legal pursuance deter stakeholders from undertaking unethical activities.

Job Description and Performance

There is ethical pursuance in the job description and the performance of the tasks. The staff and leaders ensure they comply with work ethics in delivering their objectives. There are clear guidelines that enable them to meet industry standards and promote cohesiveness. Further, work ethics are taught to all the workers, thereby improving the organization’s ethical culture (Hernandez, 2017). Moreover, there is daily reporting and supervision; thus, the management’s performance is closely monitored by the administration. The company spends a considerable amount of resources, ensuring they retain the right image and reputation by giving clear instructions and watching their staff’s productivity.

Conclusion

Ethical leadership is a broad concept that Google embraces to help the organization achieve its goals and maintain the highly competitive technology industry’s performance rating. The company invests in acquiring the best talents in the market and training their staff to ensure they are equipped with the right skills to perform duties. The maintenance of ethics in the Google Company ensures a smooth flow of operations and minimal interruptions from the law enforcers. The compliance with the work conduct is the key factor that helps the Google firm achieve its goals. Further, the application of the right procedures and processes facilitates smooth business operations and allow expansion. The policies and practices are morally upright, and the employees have a culture of good conduct.

Moreover, the firms conduct random audits to inspect and evaluate the processes, individuals, practices, and the records to better understand the company performance. The recruitment and selection of employees are a fair and transparent process that ensures that they hire the best-suited candidates for the available job positions. Lastly, there are clear instructions on the job expectations for each, and they help establish ethical conduct in the delivery of work and service to their customers.

 

References

Brenkert, G. (2008). Google, human rights, and moral compromise. Journal Of Business Ethics, 85(4), 453-478. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10551-008-9783-3

Hernandez, P. (2017). Microsoft and Google rank among the world’s most ethical companies. Eweek.com. http://www.eweek.com/it-management/microsoft-and-google-rank-among-the-worlds-most-ethical-companies.html

Mihelič, K., Lipičnik, B., & Tekavčič, M. (2010). Ethical leadership. International Journal Of Management & Information Systems, 14(5), 31-39.

Sutra, P. (2017). Ethics of Google in China. Slideshare.net. http://www.slideshare.net/larboz/ethics-of-google-in-china

Tan, J. & Tan, A. (2012). Business Under threat, technology under attack, ethics under fire: The experience of Google in China (1st ed., pp. 1-11). Toronto, ON: Springer Science + Business Media Dordrecht.

Weller, S. (2008). The effectiveness of corporate codes of ethics. Journal Of Business Ethics, 7(5), 389-395. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/bf00382543