A Letter from Ethisphere’s CEO
2017 was quite a year. While the discourse around the world changed profoundly, a stronger voice emerged. Global corporations operating with a common rule of law around the globe are now society’s strongest force to improve the human condition. This year we saw companies increasingly finding their voice; the World’s Most Ethical Companies in particular continued to show exemplary leadership. And that is no surprise to us, as not only is it the right thing to do, it is the best long-term strategy.
In fact, once again, financial metrics support this strategy as the 2018 World’s Most Ethical Companies have proven that operating with integrity leads to greater financial performance. Research has found that, when indexed, listed World’s Most Ethical Companies outperformed the U.S. Large Cap Index over five years by 10.72 percent and over three years by 4.88 percent. Ethisphere refers to this as the Ethics Premium.
The data and commentary continue to support this idea. Research from McKinsey tells us companies with more diverse workforces outperform their peers. Edelman’s Trust barometer shows employees increasingly look to their companies for societal leadership. Responsible investing continued its meteoric rise. In fact, just this month Blackrock called for the CEOs of global companies to put purpose at the forefront of their long-term vision.
Companies recognized by Ethisphere in 2018 had record levels of involvement with their stakeholders and in their communities around the world. Measuring and improving culture, leading authentically, and committing to transparency, diversity, and inclusion were all priorities.
So the responsibilities of the World’s Most Ethical Companies increase. We know they are up to the challenge. Ethisphere is committed to continually raising the standards of corporate behavior so companies can measure, improve, and collaborate. Throughout the year, we will share more performance data on leading practices from the data set.
Yes, 2017 brought profound changes. What doesn’t change is that values-based leadership and commitments to ethical business practices both pay dividends.
Once again, congratulations to the 2018 World’s Most Ethical Companies.