The term business ethics is sometimes viewed as an oxymoron. Culturally today, many would argue that the rules of the road only require the maximization of profits (or success) with the mindset that everything is okay as long as no one gets caught. Our culture is used to ranking everything with the goal to be Number One the most important thing. Every day we read of the rise and fall of organizations with the underlying storyline being ethics – or the lack thereof – being that which controlled the outcome and fate of these organizations.

The purpose of this segment is to demonstrate that ethical business is good business, with the objective of putting the participant in the mix – that is, conveying the importance of being an active participant in the protection of an organization’s ethos. As leaders, participants accept that ethics starts at the top and that means each has a personal responsibility to do the right thing.

The segment strengthens the underlying need for active participation by looking at the incremental theory of corruption and the expectancy theory, as well as talking through the relationship between ethics and the pressure for results. Case studies and best practices are used to draw out the topic’s central themes. In addition, sample steps to protecting a business are shared. As it pertains to ethics, time is allocated to “supporting cast” topics such as employee satisfaction, celebrating integrity, and sample steps to protecting a business. Finally, the segment introduces Abilene Paradox and Group Think as examples of common threats to good business ethics that can occur in the office on an everyday basis.


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