On 23 November, Dr Andreas Dombret, Member of the Executive Board of the Deutsche Bundesbank, delivered a speech on culture and ethics within banking. In his speech, Dr Dombret considers the position in which the banking sector has been left with regard to public trust and confidence as a result of the financial crisis, and acknowledges that there is a lot to be done to re-establish faith in the banking industry as a whole. With a view to re-gaining this trust, Dr Dombret refers to company codes of conduct and the need to focus on ethics and culture in daily corporate life; noting that company reputation is a bi-product of the actions and, perhaps more importantly, the attitudes of its employees.
Dr Dombret comments that banks should be doing more to fulfil their corporate social responsibility, as it is this kind of self-regulation that shows commitment to stakeholders (being their customers, owners and staff) and is likely to benefit the bank in the long-term. In essence, if stakeholders feel valued, trust will grow and banks will ultimately acquire more business.