If you look at great companies, business ethics often play a central role in their operations, be it in their corporate governance, model, products and solutions, and talent management.

Businesses have a significant impact on society and individuals, and their actions can either positively or negatively affect various stakeholders such as employees, customers, suppliers, and the environment.

It is crucial for businesses to act ethically, which means making decisions and conducting operations based on sound moral and legal principles.

Of course, there are laws which businesses have to comply with, but ethics are much more than legal compliance.

To be ethical is to do what is right even when no one is watching.

Ethics not only prioritize what is good for the individual, but for the larger community as a whole. To be ethical is to have integrity.

At Athena Communications and Research, our business ethics and work ethos are not just lip service nor a trend we piggyback on – and definitely not simply relegated to corporate social responsibility (CSR) campaigns or DEI fluff.

Here are three ways we embed good business ethics within our work culture.

Our business ethics in leadership and culture


Societies are often highly inequitable, and in many spaces, lack diversity.

The core of our practice and why we do what we do revolves around upholding human rights and environmental justice.

As such, the founders of Athena Communications and Research are committed to upholding the highest standards of conduct in both their personal and professional lives.

We strive to include people from a diversity of ethnicities and backgrounds, including but not limited to:

  • Disabled people
  • Queer people
  • Indigenous/native people
  • Women and minority genders
  • Minority ethnicities, and
  • People from a low socioeconomic status (SES) background

We seek to include them in all processes, from conceptualization of strategies and projects to implementation.

Additionally, we champion for and offer, as much as we can, fair and just remuneration to associates we work with, and seek to work with clients who understand and can respect the concept of fair pay for fair work.

We strive to be as transparent as possible with all stakeholders we work with on matters of cost, timing and workflow so that all parties are fully aware of the costs, financial or otherwise, about doing business with us.

Our business ethics influences our choice of stakeholders


We do not work with ethically questionable organizations or individuals, and we do not partake in activities that go against our values below, guided by feminist principles:

  • Equality
  • Equity
  • Justice
  • Transparency and,
  • Humanity

Ideally, we seek to work with clients who are committed to enacting societal change in these areas, or who are cognizant of, similarly practice, and/or intend to live by these values.

Indeed, this means sometimes we would have to turn down opportunities, as lucrative as they may be, in order to stand true to our personal and business ethics.

That also means we also cannot work with clients or associates with a track record of violating human rights, or who profess problematic views and/or practices such as transphobia, homophobia, sexism or racism, among others. That simply does not sit well with us!

We are mindful of the environment


Sustainability is more than a buzzword to us, and we understand that we have a role to play in making ethical choices when it comes to the environment.

Businesses that neglect the impact they have on the environment contribute to the deterioration of natural resources. These impacts not just their operations, but also the shared earth we live on.

Continued neglect and focus on gross profits above all will affect the communities around the world, with especially disastrous impacts on marginalized groups.

As it is, we already see the negative impacts of climate change on many socially disadvantaged communities around the world.

Frankly, we aren’t a big business; we’re a small communications, research and PR agency that runs lean.

So, while our impact is relatively marginal, we still aim to cut down as much as we can on unnecessary use of resources and wastage by being a fully digital consultancy. For example, we conduct meetings, communicate, and deliver work to our clients fully online, which reduces our carbon footprint from transport, and also saves time.

We also try whenever possible to reduce the use of paper and plastic in our personal and business settings as best as we can.

And these practices we live by will follow us when we scale up as we continually look towards finding ways to reduce our carbon footprint on the earth.


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