Organizations cannot effectively function if the rules and policies that serve as the guidepost for employees’ actions and behaviors are not followed. Over the years, Ethics & Compliance Initiative (ECI) research has found that the pressure employees may experience to compromise their organization’s ethics standards, policies or the law is linked with an increased likelihood to observe misconduct. In brief—pressure goes hand in hand with higher prevalence rates of misconduct.


What contributes to employee pressure? What factors help reduce pressure? Are certain types of employees at higher risk of experiencing pressure?

To answer these questions, ECI examined the 2019 Global Business Ethics Survey™ (GBES) data to assess misconduct rates across the globe, the areas within an organization that contribute to employee pressure to compromise their organization’s ethics standards and to identify who within the organization is more likely to experience pressure.

In this report you will learn about:

  • The link between pressure and misconduct
  • Which employees are most likely to experience pressure
  • The potential effect of COVID-19 on pressure and misconduct; and more.

The findings in this report utilize employee responses from 18 countries. Generally, the results discussed are reported by five global regions comprised of the following countries:

Asia Pacific: China, India, Indonesia, Japan, South Korea
Europe: France, Germany, Italy, Russia, Spain, Turkey, United Kingdom
North America: United States, Mexico
South America: Argentina, Brazil


ECI Members

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By: Brad Fulton