In an industry where the objectives of different parties often conflict, our role includes holding the ring as honest brokers. This can only be done, and be seen to be done, if we operate from a zone of no vested interests. Our responsibility is to be correct in all senses of the word and to tell our clients what they need to hear.
It should not be forgotten that institutionalised corruption caused the two largest bankruptcies in history (Enron and WorldCom); projects and deals in construction and property, large or small, involve significant amounts of money to the people concerned. Tension arises if one party attempts to give less than was asked for, or another attempts to receive more than is being paid for. The task of defusing tension requires us to understand the facts and understand the contract. We must take account of the human factors and be prepared to listen, but then set out our interpretation of the actual position with firmness and clarity.
Ethical behaviour in this role is paramount and Integrity is therefore the first of our three core values, alongside Innovation and Collaboration.
In defining and communicating this central tenet of our culture, we are clear that this has to be something we live and breathe in our working lives. If we do not treat each other fairly and with respect, behaving as honest and trustworthy individuals, how can we do so with our clients?
We reinforce our cultural values in many positive ways, and we also run the necessary checks to maintain our standards – ranging from the use of a Constructive Criticism process to the Quality Management System of ISO 9001.
Our position is that Integrity, in word and deed, begins with the people at the top and must continue through all levels of leadership including the smallest groups. It is not dependent on rank, nor is it optional according to the context, be that corporate, social or personal.