Leadership Stories - Using Ethics in Decision Making
What motivates you to make a decision?
What can we do to make sure that we add ethics in decision making?
What do you do when you receive too much change back from a cashier?
Would your answer change if you knew the cashier?
What about if you are withdrawing four $20's from an ATM and one of the $20's is a $100 dollar bill instead?
Do you report it to the Bank or just say - WOW - This is my lucky day!
Whether you said you would keep the extra change or the $100 dollar bill, ethics is still a part of your decision.
It just happens to be your set of values attached to it.
As a general rule we think of someone that is ethical as being honest. I personally agree with that whole heartedly.
The problem with being honest is that it can even get a little clouded.
As Humans we have a way of justifying things in our own minds, to the point that we make things that are clearly wrong into being right.
As an example of this and using ethics in decision making, let's take a look at a situation and you be the judge.
* Corporate Ethics Training
You go to a nice restaurant where you have a good friend working as a server. You know that they have only been there a few weeks.
When you and your spouse arrive you specifically ask to be seated in their area.
They are assigned as your Server and you enjoy a wonderful meal. They did a fantastic job and you were very proud of them.
The ticket that they prepare is presented to you and several of the items you ordered are missing.
This saves you a considerable amount of money. You ask them about it trying to be honest and they quietly tell you in a secretive way not to worry about it.
They go on to whisper to you that they could lose their job, but you are good friends and it is worth the risk.
So the question is, are you being dishonest if you do not say something?
If you push the issue and try to pay the correct amount your friend might be fired. Do you want to be responsible for that?
Do you justify the entire experience by convincing yourself that you are honest but they are not?
Or any other version of that!
Point is that some decisions are easy and some are near impossible.
I have always tried to look at it in one very clear way and even then it is hard.
I tell myself would I like to see my actions reported in the newspaper or on the news. If the answer is "No". Then I am probably doing something unethical.
In business we must stand behind our principle's and stand fast on the truth. Not stand behind the curtain like the Wizard in “The Wizard of OZ”!