Do morals only ever exist in public?

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Core values - Priory Hall

Morals, beliefs, values – we all claim to have them.

From a basic understanding of right and wrong to a detailed set of beliefs that determine how we live our life and make our decisions.

As an individual it is very easy to abide to say that we follow a moral code but is that really the reality? Honesty, respect, kindness, trust, love, compassion, forgiveness are all lovely values but in day to day life how often do you put them into practice?

I can only speak for myself but I know at times I’m guilty of not doing this. Whether that is lying to a friend telling them that a top looks gorgeous when it’s really rather awful or getting frustrated with somebody when really all they needed was a friend or at the very least a little understanding.

If we make a mistake in our personal life chances are only those closest to you will know and hopefully all will be forgiven and you move on.

However in business is it really any different?

As a business you write a mission statement, decide on your messaging and have a clear picture of what you want your company to say and stand for.  This all paints a pretty picture (that will hopefully attract customers) but is the reality representative of who you are and how you behave?

How many times have you been promised loyal friendly customer support, 24/7 back up and service with a smile when signing the contract only to be left hanging on the phone getting frustrated at an automated machine when there is a problem.

It’s one thing to experience this when you are dealing with a phone company or an internet provider but this can get a whole lot more serious when you are dealing with a financial institution.

Recently the plight of Stephanie Meehan’s family and those living in Priory Hall has been brought to light by the terrible circumstances surrounding her husband taking his own life. I don’t know Stephanie and I wasn’t there when she engaged with her bank but I can only imagine that this wasn’t the customer service they signed up for.

On the homepage of the bank involved it urges customers to “join the bank that’s all about you”.

I can’t help but think that Stephanie feels that the bank very much “isn’t all about her or her family”.

Did their commitment to customer service and support only emerge after they were publicly named and shamed by the media literally weeks after they were still sending her letters demanding payment?

This is an extreme example and hopefully a rare one but it’s worth asking yourself do you or your business live up to your moral values and the “promise” you declare on your marketing materials?

Ann Marie BarronAnn-Marie Barron is a PR Executive with Fuzion

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