GOA Ethics


All member firms agree to these standards and understand that compliance is necessary for the success of all of the member organizations. Failure to adhere to these standards and to correct any non adherence to these standards will be cause for termination from the GOA organization. Any firm that believes there is a violation of the standards shall bring the firm and violation to the attention of the chair of the organization. He/she will bring this to the attention of the committee for investigation, resolution and recommendation to the member firms. In all cases a member firm will have full ability to resolve the concerns and achieve approval of the committee.

1. The acceptance of membership implies that the member firm is in agreement with the general policies, principles and ethics of the GOA. If, despite concerted efforts, the member firm cannot reach agreement with the Association as to acceptable ethical standards of conduct, the affiliation will be terminated.

2. A member firm must continually strive to improve its professional practice through formal, effective means.

3. When a member firm possesses information that raises doubt as to the ethical behavior of another career development partner, the partner must take action to rectify such a condition. Such action shall follow the procedures established by the GOA.

4. When a partner advertises/markets its services, that member must accurately inform the public (in a professional manner) when referring to the nature of services provided. The advertising/marketing clearly states accurately the name of the firm and any mention of individuals must be accurate and clear. This advertising can be in the form of print, voice and electronic, such as social media examples of Linked in, Facebook, Twitter and Blogs, internet advertising, videos and any other form of advertising/marketing.

5. When information is imported to the public by the staff of a partner, that member has the responsibility of ensuring that the content is accurate, unbiased, objective and factual.

6. A partner will neither claim nor imply professional abilities or qualifications exceeding those actually possessed by the firm and will agree to be responsible for correcting any such misrepresentation made by its staff.

7. A partner takes responsibility for development of its staff. The partner must select competent persons for staff, and assign responsibilities compatible with each staff member’s skill and experience. Staff members using assessment testing must have received adequate training in their interpretation.

8. A partner is encouraged to ensure staff participation in educational programs.

9. A partner is obligated to keep confidential the names of all clients, the consulting relationship, and the information resulting there from. The staff consultant is responsible for the client file, and revelation to others of consulting material may occur only upon consent of the client.

10. In the career consulting relationship, the firm must see that the staff consultant maintains respect for the client and does not engage in any activity that compromises the professional relationship between consultant and client.

 11. If a staff member is determined to be and/or unable to be of professional assistance to a client, the member firm must change the consulting relationship. If a staff member feels that another staff member might be of professional assistance, then with the permission of the client, a transfer may be made.

 12. Test results constitute one of a variety of pertinent sources of information for career evaluation and consultant decisions. In selecting tests for use, the partner must carefully consider the validity and reliability of the test(s), since general validity and reliability may be questioned ethically and legally.