Balancing the Rules for Gifts, Hospitality

By Harris, Anne R. | National Defense, September 2016 | Go to article overview

Balancing the Rules for Gifts, Hospitality


Harris, Anne R., National Defense


"OK, team, it's our first trip to visit the new customer in Asia. I read that in their culture, you're expected to show up with a gift. We need to decide what to give them and it has to be really special; I mean, this contract is worth millions and this is our chance to show them how much it means to us. Oh, by the way, Bob, are you coming to the game tonight with us? We're going to be in the consultants' skybox!"

This is a common scenario in many big businesses. Somewhere in the code of ethics and conduct of nearly every government contractor is a commitment to conduct business with integrity, compete fairly based on the merits of its products and services, and comply with all applicable laws and regulations.

Managing ethics and compliance issues around gifts and hospitality however, is challenging. After all, business is conducted between people. Good working relationships are built on communications, which lead to understanding and successful execution, which in turn lead to trust. And in the interest of promoting positive relationships, it is customary for people to offer and receive gifts and hospitality.

There are numerous and complex rules and regulations pertaining to gifts and hospitality. They exist in the interest of fair competition and process integrity, but create a compliance landscape that can be tricky to navigate. Contractors need to be particularly mindful of the ethics rules affecting their relationships with U.S. government employees. In the international arena, there is an increasingly dense web of anti-bribery and corruption laws, as well as an environment in which cultural norms can cause confusion and concern.

The challenge for contractors is to adopt processes that allow them to cultivate business relationships for success, while also protecting the company by facilitating ethical conduct and compliance. A solid approach to gifts and hospitality management should include, at a minimum:

* Clear and understandable policies and procedures with as little ambiguity as possible;

* Guidelines for interactions with all business contacts, including commercial contacts, as well as those representing the U.S. government or other governments;

* Scenarios with situations typical to the business to guide employee understanding of what is and is not generally acceptable;

* Defined value thresholds, above which approval is required;

* Documented approval processes for items that exceed thresholds or require determinations of "reasonableness";

* Information on whom to contact for questions or approval and how to reach them promptly;

* A gift log of items offered and received and;

* Procedures to audit, monitor and track travel and expense records, as well as gifts and hospitality.

At Mission Essential Personnel LLC, gifts and hospitality policies are practical, reasonable and user-friendly. Mission Essential provides training not only on policy and guidelines, but also on the reasons behind them. Rather than publish rigid lists of prohibitions, they believe in treating employees like professionals, giving them responsibility and empowering them to make good decisions on a daily basis that support their functions. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

Balancing the Rules for Gifts, Hospitality
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.