Code of Professional Values, Conduct & Ethics

The Founder’s Purpose and Intent

Carnegie Management Group (founded in 1999) and its people, has always been underpinned by a core set of values and ethics that would be the basis of the Firm’s culture into the following years. It is timely to re-state those core values and set broad guidelines for the future.

13 Core Values and Ethics “bequeathed” by the founder to the CMG Family

  1. Be honest always
  2. Be a person that others are justified in trusting
  3. If you say you will do something – do it
  4. You don’t have to be the best, but you should always strive to be the very best you can be
  5. Treat all people with courtesy and respect – no exceptions
  6. Remember that the way to be happy is to think of what you can do for others. The way to feel miserable is to think about what people should be doing for you
  7. Be part of something bigger than your own self. That something can be the CMG family, the environment or whatever you choose
  8. Remember that hard work should always be satisfying and fun
  9. Nurture the ability to laugh and have fun
  10. Have respect for those who have gone before. Learn from their weaknesses; build on their strengths
  11. Before you can lead others, you must be able to lead yourself
  12. Always strive to provide leadership, motivation and setting the “example” to and for others
  13. Communicate, communicate – always communicate

Professional Standards

Partners of the Carnegie Management Group community are obligated to maintain the highest standards of professionalism. Partners come from a variety of professions of origin, many with their own codes of ethics. Becoming an integral part of CMG, however, represents a willingness to adhere to the standards of professional conduct outlined below. When a Partner’s specific professional discipline’s code of ethics calls for a standard of conduct different from the following, whichever code or guideline is the more stringent or more extensive or demands the higher standard and sensitivity will apply.

Clients

At the outset of an engagement, the Partner will outline in writing the nature and substance of the work undertaken during the course of the engagement, including timelines and outcomes. Should the need arise to revise the definition of “work” during the engagement, this need will be communicated to and negotiated with all appropriate parties and confirmed in writing.

All Partners will keep client information and the identity of the client confidential and will not disclose it without the written consent of the client external to the CMG Partner team.

Integrity

Partners must not breach public trust in the profession or the specific trust of their clients/fellow CMG Partners. Partners must always act with the utmost honesty, integrity and sincerity in their approach to professional work.

Objectivity and Independence

Partners must be objective, impartial and free of conflicts of interest in the performance of their professional duties.

In each professional assignment undertaken for a client, Partners should be seen to be free of any interest which might be regarded, whatever its actual effect, as being incompatible with objectivity.

Partners will ensure that they are always aware of the client’s objectives and the outcomes that the client is trying to achieve, while being careful not to not lose the objectivity created by the desire to promote their interests of CMG and fellow CMG Partners.

Ethical Behaviour

Partners must conduct themselves in a manner consistent with the good reputation of a professional services organization – and consistent with that maintained, at least, by the Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD) – at the very least.

Partners must at all times refrain from conduct or action that may tarnish the image of CMG or unjustifiably detract from the good name of CMG in the community. This includes behaviour at all events attended by Partners (eg. Family Business Australia – FBA).

It is imperative that Partners endeavour to at all times maintain professional standards that improve and enhance the image of CMG.

The code of professional conduct also includes professional standards which may be considered mandatory for Partners to comply with. These standards include additional requirements on matters of particular importance as determined by a CMG Board from time to time.

Professional Conduct

  1. Partners will not represent their education, training, experience, professional credentials and competence, or areas of skill and expertise in a deceptive or misleading manner.
  2. Partners will respond to all new/existing client inquiries and fellow Partner requests (including email and telephone) within 1 working day of receipt – if only at least to acknowledge same to arrange a specific time for a reply.
  3. When a Partner refers a client to a CMG colleague, the Partner will disclose to the client the nature of the business relationship between them and whether there will be any fee sharing.
  4. Partners agree not to misrepresent their affiliation with CMG, nor to imply that being an Partner of CMG implies either credentialing or endorsement by CMG – unless they have been fully accredited, for example, by FBA as an Accredited Family Business Adviser, by AICD as an Executive Mentor and like professional bodies, consistent with having met all requirements for this status.
  5. Partners will avoid real or perceived conflicts of interest whenever possible and will disclose them to all affected parties.
  6. Partners have an obligation to provide a client with all information obtained in the course of conducting their engagement that is pertinent to the decisions the client is contemplating.
  7. Professional Indemnity Insurance is a matter to be determined in the future. In the interim Partners will not impart direct instructional advice. CMG provides mentoring guidance only.
  8. Partners have a duty to keep current in their professional practices through self-study and regular attendance at professional conferences and courses.
  9. Partners, in their professional activities, will treat all persons fairly regardless of their race, creed, colour, national origin, religion, gender, age, marital status, sexual preference, physical condition, and/or appearance.
  10. Partners will recognize and respect intellectual property rights, including providing specific acknowledgment of the original authorship and source when publishing or publicly representing another person’s work.
  11. Partners will assist other members in their professional development, where possible and appropriate, and support them in complying with this Code of Professional Conduct and Ethics.
  12. Partners will respect the development and growth of the field of Executive Mentoring and will take positive steps to promote the field.
  13. Partners will encourage their clients and acquaintances to professionally develop themselves and will promote the benefits of professional association membership – eg. FBA and AICD – especially when the client is introduced to them by FBA or via the AICD web site presence.
  14. Partners will refrain from and discourage public or personal criticism of another Partner’s work.
  15. A Partner may only speak on behalf of CMG to the media in all its forms if so authorized by the Chief Executive.
  16. Partners should ensure that any expression of their own views cannot be construed as a statement on behalf of CMG – unless so authorized
  17. A Partner will refrain from inviting an employee of a client to consider alternative employment without prior discussion with the client.
  18. Partners will refrain at all times from overtly initiating active new business solicitation of clients at public events – eg. any FBA initiated event.

The Investment – commonly known as Fees

Partners will disclose in writing and at the outset of every engagement the basis of their fees and expenses and provide an estimate of the total cost of the service whenever possible.

Research

Partners who do research will carry out the research with respect and concern for the dignity and welfare of the people who participate. It is the Partner’s responsibility to be adequately informed, and abide by, relevant laws and regulations regarding the conduct of research with human participants. Individuals entering into research must do so voluntarily and with adequate information. Any research must be carried out consistent with the Professional Conduct provisions – above. Acknowledgement to others’ work and research is a necessity.

My Own Personal Mission and Guiding Principles

“To have purpose that is worthwhile, and that is steadily being accomplished, that is one of the secrets of a life that is worth living.

I have determined what I believe in and believe in what I do. All else is a waste of time.

It is true that the thing always happens that you really believe in; and the belief in a thing makes it happen. And I think nothing will happen until you thoroughly and deeply believe in it.

Therefore the secret of making something work in my life is, first of all, the deep desire to make it work: then the faith and belief that it can work: then to hold that clear definite vision in my consciousness and see it working out step by step; without one thought of doubt or disbelief.

So I do not follow where the path may lead. I go, instead, where there is no path and leave a trail.
For me, this is my guiding light – which is timeless.”

Paul W Smith