By Linda Fisher Thornton Demonstrating care is one of the hallmark requirements of good leadership. In addition to caring about what happens in our own careers, we must CARE about people, about their success, and about creating a positive work environment. If leaders don’t seem to care, that numbs the organization’s culture, disabling the natural systems that would prevent and identify ethical risks.
Ethical Leaders Care (Part 2)
By Linda Fisher Thornton Using an ethics of care changes how we think and act as leaders. It helps us remember that each person is important and that treating each other with care is part of our shared human experience. Caring shows that we know that people are more than task-doers and that leading is more than tactical, more than obligatory, more than just a job
Ethical Leaders Care (Part 1)
By Linda Fisher Thornton Ethical leadership is about much more than making good decisions and abiding by laws and regulations. One of the elements of ethical leadership that may be overlooked when we view ethics using a “legal lens” is supporting and developing the potential of the people we lead.
How Are Authenticity and Self-Actualization Connected?
By Linda Fisher Thornton Authenticity has become a common term used to describe a level of human growth or attainment. I previously wrote about the multiple dimensions of authenticity and how they relate to living an intentional, aware, and ethical life. I became curious about how authenticity relates to measures of human development and Maslow's concept of self-actualization. Scott Barry Kaufman, a humanistic psychologist who tested and built on Maslow's research, includes Authenticity in the list of 10 characteristics of Self-Actualization.
Insights For The Class of 2023
By Linda Fisher Thornton While the world will pull you in many different compelling directions, it is your values that will keep you anchored. Become aware of them. Nurture them…Know what you believe in. Live it. Set an example for others by building a good, ethical life in a chaotic world.
What Drives Our Thinking?
By Linda Fisher Thornton When we talk about "ethical leadership" we are talking about the intersection of multiple connected variables that affect our choices. We choose our approach based on a number of variables that are influenced by our level of learning, growth and experience. Here are some of the variables (which may be influenced by learning and development) that converge to define our sense of what "ethical leadership" includes.
Difference Making Starts Small
By Linda Fisher Thornton Always remember that making a difference starts small, and builds over time. It's not just in the big grandiose projects we take on. It's also the friendship and kindness we show to others day in and day out that changes their lives for the better.
Light Bulb Moments
By Linda Fisher Thornton This week I'm sharing some thoughts about teaching and learning that have been on my mind. It is hard for me to hear about students who are struggling with teachers or professors who try to trick them with impossible tests and quizzes - where everyone does poorly and classgrades have to be rounded up. This kind of behavior in the classroom leads to stress, frustration, lack of confidence, unfairly poor grades and other negative outcomes, when students really do know the material. It can happen, though, when the focus of teaching is in the wrong place.
What’s the Difference? Is It Fake News or Misinformation?
By Linda Fisher Thornton Most people are concerned about how much information that is "out there" isn't true. And UPenn found that "misinformation works much more easily than the efforts to undo it. Their data revealed that misinformation is almost always accepted as fact — a staggering 99.6% of the time — whereas attempts to correct it succeed only in only 83% of cases." (UPenn, Misinformation, Misconceptions, and Conspiracy Theories in Communication)
Caring For a Positive Culture
By Linda Fisher Thornton I have written a lot about ethical culture building, but there is one simple concept that is a game changer that many leaders overlook. It is the importance of simultaneously managing two things well in order to shore up both sides of the system.
Building an Ethical Culture (Part 5)
By Linda Fisher Thornton Leaders are in a unique position to make ethics a priority through their everyday actions, but simply modeling ethics isn’t nearly enough. Here is a starting list of 5 actions leaders can take that move organizations toward an ethical culture, besides telling people how important ethics is and demonstrating it in everyday behavior and choices.
Building an Ethical Culture (Part 4)
By Linda Fisher Thornton Ethical Culture is a System of Systems Don’t assume that an ethical culture will just happen in your workplace. Even if you are a good leader, ethical culture is a delicate thing, requiring intentional positive leadership and daily tending. It requires more than good leadership, more than trust building, and more than good hiring. Why does building an ethical culture require so much more than good leadership? Ethical culture is a system of systems, and just putting in good leadership, trust-building and good hiring doesn’t make it healthy.
Building an Ethical Culture (Part 3)
By Linda Fisher Thornton Ethics has a compounding effect on culture, and our leadership choices determine whether that effect will be positive or negative. Being diligent about ethics in every decision brings the culture ethics dividends. Being careless about ethics brings ethics penalties. The tricky part about managing ethical culture is that every leader decision and action throughout the organization is changing the equation. The culture equation is changing in real time, every day.
Building an Ethical Culture (Part 2)
By Linda Fisher Thornton One of my favorite concepts for understanding how social media is changing the visibility of organizational culture is Trendwatching.com’s report Glass Box Brands. As Trendwatching.com eloquently explains, “In an age of radical transparency, your internal culture is your brand.” The key point I take away from this important report is that we can no longer assume that our culture is private. In fact, it’s completely public and it defines our brand.
Building an Ethical Culture (Part 1)
By Linda Fisher Thornton After I published “Prevention or Cure: Your Choice” about reducing ethical risk and creating a positive culture a reader asked for more information about the business case for prevention. Here are some compelling reasons why the prevention approach is a better business decision than waiting for ethical problems and applying a “cure” after the organization is already in trouble.