Effective and ethical leadership

At Blue Label we believe that effective and ethical leadership is centred around integrity. It is about doing the right thing – being accountable, responsible, fair and transparent.

We recognise that ethical leadership within Blue Label improves public trust, enhances risk, compliance and ethics management, and strengthens stakeholder relations. This is achieved through:

  • our key values:
    • customer service orientation;
    • achievement and drive to succeed;
    • honesty and integrity;
    • enjoyment; and
    • collaboration;
  • leadership’s commitment to upholding our key values; and
  • the provision of mechanisms to report and manage unethical behaviour.


Our strategy this year is to drive an inclusive culture by creating unique experiences for all employees. We understand that business results are driven through people and people are continuously evolving. The Success Management framework provides the framework for us as an organisation to look after our talent and ensure that we have the right skills in the organisation while also providing opportunities for growth. We encourage a growth mindset that allows individuals to improve themselves and their skill while contributing to the success of the team and Blue Label at large.

2024 focus areas

  • Implementation of the inclusive leadership programme and cascading it to all management levels;
  • Building talent pipeline for senior and top management levels; and
  • Ensuring that succession planning addresses the EE plan and development from within.

Maintaining high ethical standards

Blue Label’s Social, Ethics and Transformation Committee is established in compliance with the Companies Act, No 71 of 2008. It in turn elevates social and ethics matters to Board level. This ensures that ethics are treated as a matter of strategic importance.

The Social, Ethics and Transformation Committee maintains oversight of the ethics policies and applications within Blue Label and the Chairman of the Board sets the ethical tone for the Board as a whole. The primary ethics-related items that are monitored and reported on at the Social, Ethics and Transformation Committee level include:

  • the 10 United Nations Global compact principles that influence our alignment;
  • anti-fraud and corruption policies and procedures;
  • consumer relations and compliance with consumer protection laws; and
  • environmental, health, and public safety.

No Blue Label operations have been subject to human rights reviews during FY23.

No human rights grievances have been reported in FY23.

Employees are expected to demonstrate ethical business practices at all times. All new staff members undergo an induction programme that includes training on the code of business conduct and the function of the ethics hotline, with emphasis on what should be reported and how to report unethical behaviour via this channel.

Thus, all employees have received training on Blue Label’s anti-corruption policies and procedures. Anti-corruption training is provided to business partners based on their risk profile in relation to Blue Label. Anti-corruption training will be rolled out to governance body members during FY24.

The ethics hotline is outsourced to Tip-offs Anonymous, a division of Deloitte, and can be accessed by calling 0800 555 221. The ethics hotline is available to all stakeholders. Seven incidences were reported during the year, the majority of which were human resource related, which were subsequently investigated by management and no further action was required.

Blue Label has mechanisms for seeking advice about ethical and lawful behaviour and organisational integrity and these include attending monthly SAICA administered ethics seminars.

In FY23, a key focus area has been the revision and continued alignment of our policies, supported by annual revision exercises.

The following policies have been reviewed, amended where necessary, implemented, and relevant training applied in FY23:

  • Code of Conduct;
  • Ethics Policy;
  • Information Security Policy;
  • Business Continuity Policy;
  • Whistleblower Policy;
  • Data Breach and Response Policy; and
  • Gift Declaration Policy.

Key provisions of our policies include the following:

  • Each employee of Blue Label has an obligation to act in the best interests of Blue Label and must not let outside activities or outside financial interests interfere with those obligations.
  • Employees must be open and transparent about all gifts and hospitality given or received and are required to disclose these. When a gift is considered lavish or extravagant, it could be construed as gratification which immediately places Blue Label and those individuals concerned at risk of being prosecuted for acts of corruption. All gifts must be declared in terms of the Gift Declaration Policy.
  • Fraudulent, corrupt or illegal practices will not be tolerated. Bribes or any other illicit payments will neither be paid nor accepted. A zero-tolerance policy has been adopted regarding such improper payments.
  • Blue Label does not participate in any illegal anti‑competitive activity.
  • Employees should not authorise nor participate in any illegal conduct or action (such as price manipulation or tender fixing) that restricts competition.

Maintaining high ethical standards

  • Blue Label is non-political. It does not make contributions to political parties or allow its assets and services to be used in any way which favours any particular political grouping, other than in the provision of its normal products and services, under its standard terms and conditions and at arm’s length prices.
  • Blue Label facilities, equipment and personnel should only be used for the business’s activities and purposes, except when other uses are specifically authorised by Blue Label.
  • Employees are required to always be mindful of what a payment is for and whether the amount requested is proportionate to the goods or services provided. Any suspicions, concerns, or queries regarding a payment should be clarified.
  • Employees must avoid any activity that might lead to, or suggest, that a facilitation payment or kickback will be made or accepted by us.
  • Blue Label does not place any limitations on an employee’s right to freedom of association, specifically the right to collective bargaining.
  • Blue Label is against child labour and forced/ compulsory labour.
  • The Ethics Officer takes responsibility for managing the organisation’s ethics programme. The Ethics Officer reports to the Social, Ethics and Transformation Committee (SETC) on progress with the ethics management plan, and the state of ethics within the organisation.


No material ethical or corruption-related breaches require reporting in FY23.

All ethical matters that come to the attention of management are addressed in an appropriate manner.

Blue Label is satisfied that its corporate governance framework (including compliance and risk) is at a minimum in keeping with best industry practice and industry norms. Blue Label continues to maintain a zero-tolerance policy regarding any lapses in good governance.