Friday, March 31, 2006

Lessons from the Ethics Panel

One of the other sites I like and follow as best I can given the stresses of living in the 24/7 business world is the Electronic Recruiting Exchange where I find some pretty interesting discussions and blogs.

While the site is primarily designed for corporate and third party recruiters my interest in following the discussions is because to some degree we are part of the staffing space (one of the reasons we became a charter member of Pete Weddle's International Association of Employment Websites) and our membership is made up of both senior level executives (who have feelings and perceptions about the recruiting world) as well as recruiters - both corporate and third party (who have feelings and perceptions about candidates and clients).

That the ERE should be having discussions on the subject of ethics is no surprise. The recruiting industry has been talking about and around this subject for a long time, just as companies have been talking about it for a long time.

The most recent exchanges on this topic arose from a panel on ethics that was featured at ERE's recent conference in San Diego. One of the more recent posts on the subject was titled Lessons from the Ethics Panel if you wanted to check it out to see how the discussion was going. Clearly people have feelings on the subject, but it also makes one wonder why it should be a topic of discussion after all these years.

As I have followed the discussion and digested the points of view expressed, it reminded me of a couple of things:

1. Whether it is an individual, a group, a company, a profession, an industry, a country - we all (rightly or wrongly) have our reputations. Proof once again of the old saw: "Perceptions are real to those who hold them," and

2. "Actions speak louder than words."

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