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How to Create and Maintain an Ethical Culture


How to Create and Maintain an Ethical Culture

As a Terumo BCT distributor, you are a valued partner and an essential part of our success. As such, we strive to provide you with the same tools and resources as our associates, including important information about our brand, mission and values.


David Perez, CEO, wrote a white paper about the importance of ethics—a fundamental part of the Terumo BCT brand—and offered some insight into how we work to create and maintain an ethical culture. Below, we share some of those methods and encourage you to employ them.


Ethics Are Just Good Business

Our stakeholders depend on us to provide high-quality products and services that meet their needs and exceed their expectations. They also trust us to behave ethically. The value of doing so is increasingly clear: companies who understand the importance of ethics attract the best people, protect their brands and maximize business performance. That is why our Code of Conduct is an integral part of our company's culture.


At minimum, the Code calls on each of us to do the right thing when no one is looking, be honest and forthright in all that we do, know and comply with all applicable laws (including the new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) requirements), and avoid the appearance of impropriety.


This Code applies to all associates and business partners (including vendors, suppliers, distributors and independent sales agents) and is based on the codes of conduct adopted by our primary industry associations in the United States (AdvaMed), Europe (Medtech Europe) and other places.


Train (and Retrain) Regularly

While leaders can and must set an example, they also must train and educate associates about "what right looks like." It is vital to provide easy access to training material, deliver localized in-person training and encourage respectful two-way communication. And be sure to emphasize the spirit, not just the details, of your code of conduct and other applicable codes and laws.


Reward the Behavior You Want

If you tell associates that you value integrity as highly as financial performance, but you reward only financial performance, you may be sending the wrong message. To help highlight the importance of integrity, broaden your definition of what deserves recognition. For example, praise associates who make tough decisions that may result in less short-term revenue, but that will be right for the long-term customer relationship. And if you measure any compliance-based metrics, report and celebrate the outcomes with all associates.


Encourage Dialogue

If you never hear bad news, it is likely that associates are afraid to identify problems or disagreements and discuss them openly. Be aware of how your behaviors, biases and incentive systems can send conflicting messages. And be sure to offer multiple ways for associates to ask questions and report concerns, including in person, on the phone or via email. Also, provide an option to report potential problems anonymously.


Understand Cultural Boundaries

Understanding and respecting different cultures and customs while also maintaining clear global standards can be challenging. For example, elaborate gift-giving is deeply ingrained in some cultures, but it is a violation of our code of ethics. This may make competition more difficult for associates in some areas, but it is imperative that we conduct business in a way that reflects our values.


Ethics Is Intentional

And it is not easy. Creating and maintaining a culture of ethical behavior takes time, resources and a commitment from everyone—from the top down. As a valued partner, you have resources available from Terumo BCT, including business conduct training, to help promote compliance with our Code.


To learn more download our Ethics Is Intentional white paper, and visit the Compliance section of our website.

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