What makes a company successful? A good product on its own will not tip the scales toward success, nor is it the only element in a customer’s decision to buy. A company’s reputation can also influence this decision. Business success requires something extra. Board members, managing directors, executives and employees working for Deutsche Telekom (employees) are expected to behave in a manner that complies with the legal obligations thus creating essentials such as trust, credibility, reliability and good reputation. That something extra also comprises integrity and each employee´s personal responsibility of his or her own actions.
In less abstract terms, all these qualities together constitute the company´s value-based culture of compliance. This is a factor that also influences the success of Deutsche Telekom Group (Deutsche Telekom). Business success does not stand above legal obligations nor is it unrelated to morality or integrity. The way Deutsche Telekom achieves business success is at least as important as the very success itself, and the Code of Conduct provides the framework of orientation for this. It combines two essential aspects. All employees are expected to comply with legal obligations and to behave with integrity. For Deutsche Telekom, the Code of Conduct is the combination between internal demands and the promise to outside at the same time. It also ensures that Deutsche Telekom remains a transparent and traceable enterprise for everybody.
The Code of Conduct applies to all board members, managing directors, executives and employees of the Deutsche Telekom worldwide. Additionally it applies to people to who are viewed as equivalent to employees in functional terms, e.g. to temporary agency employees. It summarizes the values of Deutsche Telekom and defines what kind of behavior is required by those who work for it. Whenever necessary, the basic principles of the Code of Conduct are specified in greater detail in internal policies and regulations. This understanding of values requires all our employees and management staff to show mutual respect, acknowledgement and appreciation in their dealings with each other. When implementing the Code of Conduct, each business unit of Deutsche Telekom must observe both its specific national legal obligation and, on the basis of these, the individual culture of the country in which it operates respectively.
Yet it would not be sufficient to consider the Code of Conduct simply as a general guideline. It must rather be filled with life and most actively promoted by role models. It is primarily the Executives of Deutsche Telekom who must assume this function of role modeling, not only by showing integrity, behaving in a legally compliant manner and exuding credibility. They must also ensure that their employees know the content of the Code of Conduct and comprehend what behavior is required.
The Code of Conduct and the values it embodies are not limited to employees permanently working for Deutsche Telekom. This explains why Deutsche Telekom expects its suppliers and consultants to comply with the rules of behavior manifested in this Code of Conduct and to endeavor them to ensure that they are also obliged to abide to its regulation by contract.