Ethikos Weekly Editor’s Picks – March 4, 2014



Ethikos Weekly Editor’s Picks

Examining Business Ethics Since 1987

Editor’s Top Choice:

Olympic lesson for business: Failure can build resilience

From Gael O’Brien at Business Ethics: “Watching athletes compete in the 2014 winter Olympics was a panorama of risking, perfecting and making mistakes — where some won medals and everyone demonstrated resilience, learning from mistakes to try again.

Overcoming challenges is also second nature to business leaders, but when fear of failure leads to covering up mistakes and ethical misconduct, it provides another reason why ethics and values should be tied to business strategy. It also raises questions about how organizations can better equip potential leaders in developing resilience. Resilience and deeply-held values reinforce each other. Their absence derails careers.” Read more

Other Featured Picks of the Week

An education in ethics

John T. Delaney, Dean of the Joseph M. Katz Graduate School of Business and the College of Business Administration at the University of Pittsburgh, writes for the Huffington Post, “Awards season is in full swing and Martin Scorsese’s The Wolf of Wall Street is a serious contender. The film earned a Golden Globe (Best Performance by an Actor) for Leonardo DiCaprio, as well as numerous nominations, including five Academy Awards. The Wolf of Wall Street tells the story of Jordan Belfort, a stockbroker living the high life on Wall Street and his fall into corporate crime and corruption.

It is up to business schools to motivate their students to see The Wolf of Wall Street as more than just an entertaining story isolated from school and work. Business schools have an obligation to provide students with the skills and knowledge essential for success in business. Such skills cover management, marketing, finance and more, but The Wolf of Wall Streetdemonstrates why ethics is another tool whose importance cannot be overstated.” Read more

On ethical balance, women surpass men

Anne Michaud, columnist for Long Island Newsday, writes, “Another week in New York brings fresh news of corruption and efforts to punish it. A former Nassau County police supervisor was fined and sentenced to community service for covering up a buddy’s son’s theft of high school electronics equipment. A Brooklyn assemblyman is on trial for allegedly taking bribes from undercover FBI agents. Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo is pushing an ethics bill that he hopes will lock legislators into better behavior.

In fact, 30 New York legislators have faced legal or ethical trouble since 2000. They were charged with embezzlement, perjury, extortion and tax evasion. If this is our political class, what’s a society to do?

What strikes me about the list is how few women are on it — just four. Could it be that women are more ethical than men? And if so, do we need more women in politics?” Read more

Power and ethics—lessons from Game of Thrones

From The Wharton Journal:

”For those of you who haven’t seen Game of Thrones, it’s a great show, and you should watch it as a reward for finishing FRP.

Now imagine that you are a character in the series stuck in an epic power struggle filled with wars, assassinations, dark magic and treason. Do you execute a fellow commander who killed innocent children in the name of revenge, knowing that his troops will then abandon you in the moment when you really need them to end the war? Do you kill a comrade hoping that his death will allow you to infiltrate the enemy and turn the tide of the battle? These are outlandish circumstances that we will probably never find ourselves in. But often in business and in life, we will face hard decisions where our own moral integrity is called into question, and we will have to choose not between black and white, but various shades of grey.” Read more

Leader-as-person: Who you are is how you lead

On the Huffington Post’s Blog, Dr. Jim Taylor writes, “In my first post in this series on leadership in the corporate world, I introduced you to the notion that there are roles that leaders must fulfill to be successful: person, performer, team builder, decision maker, and change agent. This post will explore what I believe lies at the heart of leadership: leader-as-person, who you are is how you lead.

As I alluded to in my first post, I take a contrarian view of leadership: I don’t believe in leadership styles. Despite the many books written about leadership styles, I would argue that we are not capable of leading in ways that conflict with who we are. In other words, we can’t be someone we are not.” Read more

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