In today's competitive business environment, a corporate code of conduct and ethics should serve as the foundation upon which employees make decisions based on honesty, integrity, confidence and trust. The presence of corporate codes of ethics can be associated with less wrongdoing in the organization. The presence of strong codes of ethics can also be associated with organizational commitment. In an ethical organization, it is understood that every significant management decision has ethical value dimensions. (Wallace, 1999) This corporate code of ethics holds a company together when its members lose their balance between work and personal life during stressful times.
In his book, "Authentic Happiness", Martin Seligman reviews a set of core values that influence ethical behavior: Wisdom and Knowledge, Self Control, Justice and Fair Guidance, Transcendence, Love and Kindness, Courage and Integrity. (Seligman, 2002) He notes that when these values are used together along with aligning actions to these principles and corporate behavioral standards, it can increase the likelihood of ethical organizational behavior.
Courage and Integrity in particular is prevalent when making decisions in the corporate environment. To practice ethical decision making, the courage to do the right thing consistently without regard to personal consequences is required. Making unpopular decisions is necessary in order to allow the company to grow and excel to survive in the business world. The decisions should be based on facts and so the need to have that knowledge and experience is needed to have access to those facts and to use it to solve problems ethically and to do what is right.
Utilizing ethics in making decisions is not just deciding to do what is right and it is more than preaching. It also can't be summed up as just "doing good". It has to be managed and consciously practiced. An organization's...