Promoting a better integration of employees’ work and personal identities can make them more likely to pursue ethical behavior, according to research highlighted in a recent online posting for KelloggInsight.

“We have demonstrated that it is in the organization’s interest to help people feel more control over cohesion in their identity,” researcher Maryam Kouchaki is quoted as saying. She is associate professor of Management & Organizations at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.

The research team’s findings are based on multiple studies involving working adults, college students and bosses.

Companies could promote more ethical behavior through something as simple as “casual Fridays” events, where employees can dress the way they would outside of the office, the researchers said. Another option could be a company retreat, where employees are encouraged to speak frankly about who they are and what they value.

Kouchaki did note that bringing your “whole self” to work can lead to “unintended consequences,” despite the positive effects on ethical behavior. (The piece did not elaborate on what those consequences might be).

The full article – “Could Bringing Your ‘Whole Self’ to Work Curb Unethical Behavior?” – can be accessed at this link.