Category | Business Ethics

Poetic Justice, Karma or Simply the Laws of Cause and Effect

Posted on 08 December 2020

Don’t draw problems to yourself by behaving exactly like the jerks whose actions you dislike. “Do unto others as you would they should do unto you” maybe an antique sentiment couched in antique English, but that doesn’t make it out-of-date.

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Sweet Revenge . . . Or Is It?

Posted on 05 December 2020

Peter Vajda muses on the tendency to want to pay people back for the hurt you believe you have suffered at their hands. Does it truly make you feel better? What will the other people do to pay you back for your vengeance on them? Is revenge really sweet?

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Trust . . . and Why It Matters So Much

Posted on 03 November 2020

Trust is the foundation for creating a civilized working environment. W. Edwards Deming, mostly remembered as the father of the Total Quality Movement, said that the primary duty of every leader is to remove fear from the workplace. Yet today fear seems more present, and more powerful, than ever. Where fear and mistrust rule, there can be no happiness, enjoyment, creativity, or sense of meaning in working life. Surely it’s time to wake up?

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Trust is at the Root of Our Problems

Posted on 27 October 2020

Gretchen Morgenson is one of my favorite commentators—at once witty and pertinent. In case you missed her most recent piece about the current business and financial woes, here’s the link (“They’re Shocked, Shocked, About the Mess”).

These short extracts show why I thought the article so relevant. I’ve been saying for months that the root cause [...]

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Bullying Bosses and Macho Cultures

Posted on 28 August 2020

‘Management by Making the Numbers’ — today’s fashionable choice amongst the macho and the greedy — produces a debased kind of leadership. We can only keep a working environment worthy of a civilized nation by valuing some things more highly than making the numbers. That means accepting ‘the numbers’ won’t be achieved — should not be achieved — if the price paid is the loss of honesty, dignity, integrity and humanity as guiding principles of corporate life.

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Maybe Honesty Does Pay After All

Posted on 13 May 2020

Researchers at the Wharton School of Business claim to have shown that playing fair with customers and suppliers, and being transparent about who gets what out of any deal, can be the best way for everyone to benefit in the long-term. Despite the predictions of classical economic theory, it seems many people value fairness highly enough to walk away from any deal they believe won’t give them a proper share of the rewards, taking nothing rather than allowing the other side to profit unfairly.

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Is a moral element fundamental to effective management?

Posted on 14 April 2020

We should all take time to consider the dangers of “management fundamentalism” and the dangers it brings.

Photo by Ramy Majouji, Wikimedia Commons

Writing in the British newspaper, The Observer, on Sunday March 23rd, 2008, Business Editor Simon Caulkin pointed to “management fundamentalism” as the primary culprit for the current financial and economic woes afflicting the global [...]


When managers cross the line

Posted on 26 March 2020

What happens when simple over-confidence leads to a nightmare of tension and lies?

There’s a reasonable belief that a healthy dose of self-esteem is necessary in a leader; that a person placed in charge of important activities needs to be courageous in facing problems and confident in his or her ability to overcome problems and obstacles. [...]

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Confucius, Li, and Decency at Work

Posted on 07 March 2020

Respectfulness towards others is the key to a more civilized workplace

The challenge for life at work is this: how to be a “business” person and a “human being” at the same time. How to be compete, yet cooperate; be hard-nosed, yet ethical; keep one’s nose to the grindstone, yet still take time to “see” and [...]

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