Dow Corning Corporation: Business Conduct and Global Values
Question 1: What are the principal drivers in developing Code of Conduct?
Jack Ludington, the CEO of Dow Corning Corporation wants to prepare a code of conduct which would be applicable to the entire corporation and in all the countries it operates. Different reasons have leaded the CEO to take this decision. The first reason is linked with the global business environment. More and more companies are suspected of illegal practices such as Lockheed Corporation which has bribed Japanese officials; even politics are concerned as shown by the Watergate scandal (illegal hearings, occult fund-raisings…). As a consequence, the Congress enacted the Foreign Corrupt Practices in 1977 to prohibit the use of bribes to obtain business. These issues were the main drivers in developing the Code of Conduct.
The motives of Jack Ludington do not restrict to the legal environment. He was aware of the cultural differences between the different countries where Dow Corning operates and, consequently the different ways of thinking of doing business in these countries. Whereas this issue was not a concern at the beginning of the corporation, its globalization raised it as one-third of the company’s workforce is now based in other countries. Jack Ludington wants it that the concept of “good practices” is the same in the different departments of his company. To that, decreeing a unique Code of conduct is indispensible.
The last reason is the reputation of the company, which could be hurt by one scandal, even the smallest, but if mediatised, which could take big proportions. This is also a way to make the difference between its competitors, assuring its customers that they can rely on Dow Corning.
Question 2: What do you think about the silicone industry?
The silicone industry is much diversified as silicone as a lot of uses: cookware, medical applications, sealants, lubricants, and insulation. Different markets...