It can be quite difficult for companies looking to expand into emerging markets to resist paying bribes or facilitation payments to speed up processes or simply have access to administrative services.
Saying “no” to corruption in emerging markets can be challenging, as it often involves navigating complex cultural, legal, and political environments. However, some companies do take a stand and resist such pressure.
Here are several steps I have seen companies take to resist corruption and promote ethical behavior in these markets:
✅Establish a clear code of conduct: Develop a code of conduct that sets out the company’s commitment to ethical behavior and prohibits any form of corruption. Communicate this code of conduct to all employees, partners, and stakeholders.
✅Train employees on how to identify and report corruption: Provide employees with training and education on how to identify and report potential corruption, as well as the resources they need to do so.
✅Implement internal controls:
Establish internal controls and procedures to prevent and detect corruption, such as internal audits and compliance reviews.
✅Conduct due diligence on business partners: Evaluate the potential risks of corruption associated with business partners and take steps to mitigate those risks.
✅Communicate with stakeholders: Communicate the company’s position on corruption to stakeholders, including customers, suppliers, and investors.
✅Seek legal and compliance guidance: Consult with legal and compliance experts to ensure that the company’s actions are in line with local laws and regulations.
✅Be prepared to walk away: Be prepared to walk away from a business opportunity if there is a risk of corruption or if the other party is unwilling to comply with the company’s anti-corruption policies and procedures.
✅Create a culture of integrity: Lead by example and create a culture of integrity within the company, where employees are encouraged to speak up and report any suspicions of corruption.
✅Support whistleblowers: Establish a robust protection mechanism for whistleblowers and ensure that they are not subject to retaliation for reporting corruption.
✅Continuously evaluate and improve: Continuously evaluate and improve the company’s anti-corruption program to ensure that it is effective in preventing and detecting corruption in emerging markets.