Mitsubishi Motors Corp. is having a hard time explaining business ethics to its employees.
Last May, the scandal-wracked company said it would conduct a series of ethics seminars for its staff. By the end of September, Chairman Yoichiro Okazaki said, he and every other Mitsubishi staffer would sign a "legal compliance pledge." That would serve as proof that the company no longer will tolerate the type of illegal activities that have six former executives facing criminal charges in Japan.
Not so fast. It turns out that the seminars produced lengthy debates among employees.
"Some people worried they'd be disciplined" if they signed a vow to obey the law and later were found to have acted illegally, says COO Hideyasu Tagaya. "We had to use a Q&A format and explain it so they would understand."
Mitsubishi has moved back the signing deadline by two months for management and by three months for the rank and file.