Scrutinize Suppliers for Ethical Business Practices

Ethics is Important at Every Step in the Supply Chain, Not Just The Steps That You Manage Directly

Ethics is not just about what happens when we serve customers and clients directly. It includes things that do not happen at headquarters or in any of our sites, but that go into the making of the final product or service that the customer purchases.

Prudent Leaders Check The Ethics of Their Suppliers

Prudent business leaders are checking suppliers at every step, looking for fair labor, reduction of carbon emissions, general environmental responsibility, responsible leadership and ethics.  Businesses are being judged by their suppliers, channels and partners, and by whatever benefit or harm they cause.

These articles include stories about businesses that learned that every step in the supply chain matters a great deal to consumers now:

Addleshaw Goddard Ethical Supplier Policy

The Mediavore’s Dilemma: Making Sustainable Media Choices by Don Carli on

What are the Next Steps?

  • Use these resources to begin to evaluate your entire supply chain for ethical practices
  • Develop a supplier code of ethics and expect your suppliers to follow it
  • Subscribe to the Leading in Context™ Blog to stay in the loop!

Linda Fisher Thornton is Owner of Leading in Context LLC, providing Tools for Ethical Leadership in a Complex Interconnected Workplace.  She teaches “Strategic Thinking for Leaders” and “Leadership, Conflict Management and Group Dynamics” as Adjunct Assistant Professor of Leadership for the University of Richmond School of Continuing Studies.

About Linda Fisher Thornton
Author of 7 Lenses, Speaker, Bringing Out the Best in People and Organizations Through Proactive Ethical Leadership, CEO Leading in Context, 2014 Top 100 Thought Leaders in Trustworthy Business Behavior, Adj. Assist. Prof. of Ethics and Leadership, UR SPCS

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