Five Unintended Consequences of Linear Problem-Solving

Systems Are Not Linear When solving complex business problems, it helps to remember that systems (including organizations) are not linear. Thinking of them as linear leads to easier one-dimensional decisions but ignores these things that we know about systems: systems are dynamic systems are adaptive systems have complex contexts (they connect with many other systems) Unintended Consequences of Linear Problem-Solving

5 Unethical Phrases: Refusing to Change

Leading ethically requires staying competent as a professional and as a leader. The speed of change in today's global economy may cause leaders to fall behind even while they are diligently working to stay on top of trends and industry knowledge. These 5…

5 Unethical Phrases: Ignoring Boundaries

Boundaries can be simply described as lines that we don't cross when doing business.  Respecting these (sometimes clear, sometimes hazy) boundaries is an important part of today's ethical leadership. The 5 phrases below signal that the speaker is ignoring an important ethical boundary:…

5 Ethics Reports and One Message: Ethics Matters

The Ethics Resource Center has posted a collection of 5 well-written ethical leadership research briefs on its website. Ethics.org The research briefs address issues in ethical business leadership including employee engagement, trust, culture, risk management, and generational differences.       For more, see new book 7 Lenses and…

The Financial Crisis and the Sustainability Crisis Have a Common Cause

How are the financial crisis and the sustainability crisis connected? They are both fueled by large numbers of business people simultaneously using a narrow, short-term view of their responsibilities. A short-term view is thinking that is narrowly focused on accomplishing short-range internal company goals and fails to consider the impact of business choices beyond the company's walls and beyond the current financial reporting period.

A Profitability Focus Signals Short-Term Thinking

A pure profitability focus is based on an outdated cause-and-effect model, a belief that we can control our profit with our choices and that those choices are more important than our constituents and the impact of what we do on our economic system, our environment and our local and global communities.

Overuse of Antibiotics: Antibiotic Hand Soap is Part of the Problem

Studies Show the Negative Impact of Antibacterial Soaps While it seems responsible to use strong soaps to reduce the spread of germs in workplace bathrooms and kitchens, studies are showing that there are serious problems with that approach from a systems perspective. The Top 3 Reasons to…

Ethical Office Supplies:Ethical Product Rankings Make Comparisons Easier

Are You Using Ethical Office Supplies?  The products you choose can help define you as an ethical business. It is becoming easier to choose ethical office products using websites that rank product ethics. The Good Office Guide 2008 - This guide includes detailed ethics ratings for…

Sustainability is a Mindset, Not a Job

Many businesses are gearing up for sustainability by adding a position to oversee it. Will adding a position without changing the way decisions are made actually lead to sustainable business practices within the organization? It turns out that sustainable CEOs are making…

100 Most Trustworthy Companies 2010

Forbes has posted its list of the 100 most trustworthy companies for 2010.   "Audit Integrity finds that its 100 Most Trustworthy Companies have consistently demonstrated transparent and conservative accounting practices and solid corporate governance and management." Forbes List of 100 Most…

Planned Obsolescence: Is it Ethical? No. Can We Still Have the Newest Gadgets? Yes!

Is Planned Obsolescence Ethical?  Every business should know its position on this important question.  Do you know yours? Many companies have the technology to make products that last far longer, and choose not to use it. You know what comes next…

Ethical Leadership Resources. LeadinginContext™.com

Free Business Ethics Resources that provide a clear, up-to-date context for leading responsibly have been added to the Leading in Context LLC website under "Resources." A Case Study for Leaders that  addresses a common problem  -  senior management not listening to the concerns of other business leaders in the…

Ethical Leadership Matters Now, More Than Ever

Linda Fisher Thornton's Guest Column that appeared in Monday's Richmond Times Dispatch explains the quickly changing landscape of ethical leadership, why the ethical leadership movement is gaining momentum, and why ethical leadership matters now, more than ever. "Ethical Leadership Matters Now, More…

Dealing With Chemicals: A Corporate Plan

Chemistry is not just confounding high school students these days. Corporate leaders are dealing with the complications of using  chemicals in an age where responsible leadership practices are expected, and where businesses are held accountable for how they impact consumer health and the environment.…