At the crossroads of ethics: The Bell Pottinger case study

The Bell Pottinger case of ethical misconduct, in which the firm’s work for the Gupta family led them to roll out an unethical communication campaign in South Africa, has highlighted more than ever the importance of communicators following the industry’s code of ethics. It is our responsibility as communicators to take a stand for ethical, transparent, and professional communication, noting that so called “alternative facts” and “fake news” have no place in professional communication.

As business communicators, we engage in activities that impact millions of people on a daily basis. We sometimes underestimate the impact we have. It is our responsibility—a matter of our moral conscience—to consider the social effect we have, and the extent to which the truth impacts our actions and those of our stakeholders. What actually happened in this case, and how do we safeguard the profession from unethical conduct?

In this session, we’ll cover:

  • How do we position the role of ethics in everything a communication professional does?
  • How to engage clients in an ethics conversation.
  • Reflections on a case study: What happened with Bell Pottinger in South Africa and why did this set the global agenda for an ethics discussion?

TrackCommunication Skills
Career level: Business leader
Date and time: Monday, 4 June, 34 p.m.

Presenter / Daniel Munslow, CPRP / South Africa is the owner and founder of MCC Consulting. Daniel has 15 years’ experience in business communication consulting, branding, and media; and has worked across multiple industries in numerous African countries, as well as in the Middle East, the U.S., Europe, and Asia/Pacific. He specializes in strategic communication and stakeholder engagement, crisis communication, measurement and evaluation, and skills development for a global client base.