What actions would you take with Sally and Jim?
It largely depends on your principles.
When faced with decisions, most people inherently rely on their own personal principles or core values to decide on the right path to take.
For example, you might believe it’s absolutely fine to make a mistake. But it’s not okay to hide it or to not learn from it.
Therefore, Sally’s actions might be enough to jeopardise her employment or, at the very least, require a formal warning and closer supervision/less independence.
In the second scenario, if workplace culture and teamwork are important to you and you believe that the team must treat one another fairly and honourably, you’d be willing to risk a fallout with Jim in order to address the situation firmly.
In both of these scenarios, your own personal principles guide you.
But your staff won’t necessarily share the same principles as you; and they will also often find themselves in these sorts of decision-making situations.
Your employees need guidelines on how you want them to act with each other and the world. That’s why you need to document your business’s principles.