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The Honor of Living Ethically

By Gary Pilnick, Chairman

This week, I found myself thinking about living with intention and setting a good example for others.

At home, I look for “teachable moments” to help my kids understand what’s right and wrong, and how to make good decisions in life.  

As parents, we must set an example for our children. As employees, we’re encouraged to do what’s right – even when that means traveling a more challenging path.

Doing what’s right means doing what we should even when no one is watching. We must operate with integrity and be mindful of the ethical cost of our actions. In the workplace, we see the personal and reputational impact of failing to do so.

Food for thought, right? 

I found myself reflecting on this on the day we received word that the Ethisphere Institute had named Kellogg Company as one of the 2018 World’s Most Ethical Companies—for the 10th time!

Ethisphere is an independent research center that promotes best practices in corporate ethics and governance. The honor is reserved for a small number of companies around the world that demonstrate corporate ethics and culture as key business drivers.

Kellogg was one of just six companies named in Ethisphere’s category of Food, Beverage and Agriculture.

I was excited and proud, of course, that “my” company had been recognized so prominently. But honestly, I wasn’t surprised.

After all, Kellogg has always focused on doing business the right way, with integrity and leadership forming our path to success.

In times of challenges and questions of ethics, we simply turn to our six K Values. These time-honored concepts reflect the spirit of our founder, W.K. Kellogg, and his commitment to doing business the right way, every day.

Integrity. Accountability. Passion. Humility. Simplicity. And, of course, Success.

Our K Values are prominently displayed in Kellogg facilities around the world. They are the foundation for every interaction we have with our business partners, our coworkers, and our communities.

In addition, our Global Code of Ethics provide us with the “rules of engagement” and a consistent set of principles for doing business in a global marketplace.

So, while it’s a huge honor for all of us here at Kellogg to have our company named one of the Ethisphere Institute’s 2018 World’s Most Ethical Companies, for me, it’s something more.

It’s a real-life teachable moment to show my kids that values and ethics will always matter, especially in today’s world.  So thank you to the entire Kellogg team. The award is possible because of the wonderful work you do and the commitment to ethical behavior that you display every day.