CONFLICT OF INTEREST


Kohler Co. values effective and innovative associates who contribute to and carry out the Mission and compensates those associates accordingly. An associate’s position must not be used directly or indirectly to obtain favors or benefits for themselves, a family member, or any other person.

Any situation in which an individual has conflicting roles or obligations should be avoided.

Corporate policy prohibits an associate other than the CEO or President and Chief Operating Officer from directly or indirectly supervising a family member, making or being involved in decisions affecting the employment of a family member, or otherwise creating an uncomfortable working environment caused by family involvement.

Whether family or financial, associates must avoid scenarios that could cause the perception of divided loyalty.

This policy provides associates of Kohler Co. with a simple method for determining a conflict and resolving that potential conflict before it actually occurs.

DISCLOSURE
An associate must make a disclosure to the best of his or her knowledge of any possible conflict of interest at the onset of employment, when a potential conflict arises or at any time a conflict may materialize.

REMOVAL OF A CONFLICT
An associate is expected to take the necessary actions to ensure that no outside interest conflicts with his or her full representation of Kohler Co. Since conflicts could negatively influence an associate’s judgement and objectivity, failure to disclose an actual or potential conflict could affect continued employment with Kohler Co.

INVESTMENTS
This policy does not require disclosure of investments in a publicly owned supplier or purchaser of materials or services or agent thereof unless the value of the investments exceeds the greater of 0.1 percent of the outstanding stock of a publicly owned corporation or a market value of $10,000 or more.

BUSINESS INTERESTS
A conflict of interest includes any investment, employment or other interest which an associate or his immediate family has, which: - Supplies materials or renders services to Kohler Co. or acts as an agent thereof. - Purchases materials or services from Kohler Co. - Is a competitor of Kohler Co. in any field.

BUSINESS OR CONSULTATION VENTURES
A conflict of interest includes any investment an associate may have in any venture that parallels his or her area of responsibility or expertise at the Company.

OTHER POTENTIAL CONFLICTS
Any possible conflict involving an associate’s more distant relatives or other known acquaintances whose investments, employment or other interests would create a detrimental situation for that associate or Kohler Co. must be disclosed.

OUTSIDE WORK ACTIVITIES
A Kohler Co. associate may be involved in other business activities or hold another job not connected with Kohler Co.. The associate must disclose these situations to his or her manager. A determination will then be made as to whether such activities conflict with the performance of the associate’s responsibilities to Kohler Co. or are inconsistent with the exercise of the necessary time and effort to fulfill such responsibilities. In such cases, it will be necessary for the associate to take action as required to remove the conflict or inconsistency.

 

The Scenario

At the start of summer, Mei, your supervisor, hired her nephew Feng to work on the team as a coordinator on a major fall product launch. While she assured the team that she would not play favorites and be just as demanding and critical of Feng’s performance, you quickly realize that this is not the case. Feng comes and goes as he pleases, misses major assignment deadlines, and simply cannot be trusted as a contributing member of the team. And Mei has turned a blind eye to the situation, neglecting to address her nephew’s poor performance. You fear that her family ties to Feng are superseding the best interests of the team.

 

Our Stance

First and foremost, corporate policy prohibits an associate other than the CEO or President and Chief Operating Officer from directly or indirectly supervising a family member, making or being involved in decisions affecting the employment of a family member, or otherwise creating an uncomfortable working environment caused by family involvement. In addition, any situation in which an individual has conflicting roles or obligations should be avoided since it may have adverse effects on the team performance and dynamics. As such, this situation should be reported to an HR representative to determine and resolve this conflict of interest.