Leadership, Blurred Lines and Sliding Scales

By Linda Fisher Thornton Leadership has entered a new realm, leaving the space of knowns and certainties (which was an illusion anyway) and entering the space of deep uncertainty, blurred lines and sliding scales. What it takes to succeed as a leader in this new realm is completely different from the leadership of ages past.

How Values Change Everything

By Linda Fisher Thornton of values as a critical element in enabling and focusing individual and collective success. Values shape your life, leadership, career and relationships. If you are currently going through life without knowing what your values are, you're missing out on a powerful force for good that can offer a turbo-charged boost to propel you to where you want to go. This week I'm sharing how values change everything. Take a look at some of the many ways that values are transformational, and if you haven't identified yours yet, I'll share some advice on how to get started.

Elements of Ethical Leadership Development

By Linda Fisher Thornton Ethical leadership development is the ongoing process of guiding leaders to become ethical people and ethical leaders. It is not the same thing as compliance training or legal requirements, although those are also important. This is the human development that happens over time that brings leaders to the point of being able to handle what the world throws at them using ethical thinking and action.

What Leadership Legacy Will You Leave?

By Linda Fisher Thornton What kind of leadership legacy will you leave? It's a powerful question that we don't often stop to think about. Here are some questions to reflect on to assess your legacy, as it stands now, and determine whether that's the "message in a bottle" that you want to leave for future generations.

600th Blog Post: 10 Leadership Lessons Learned

By Linda Fisher Thornton I've been blogging for 12 years, after making a very rocky start on March 5, 2009. If I had let my early failures determine my future, I would never have made it to this point, celebrating 600 posts on the Leading in Context Blog. Today I'm sharing 10 Leadership Lessons I've learned since starting this blog in the hopes that they will inspire you to press forward in your important work.

When Position Power and Ethics Collide

By Linda Fisher Thornton Our responsibilities as a citizen, worker, leader, family member, and friend require us to choose ethics over loyalty. Yet, when we do, it can surprise people. Maybe that's because it is not the easiest path to take. Here's a story about a situation I faced very early in my career, when I was in my 20s.

Ethical Awareness is a Moving Target

By Linda Fisher Thornton How well is your organization navigating the ethical pitfalls of the working world? If you're finding it to be a major challenge right now, you're not alone. Why is it so hard to navigate ethical minefields now? There is currently a "toxic soup" of factors at play...

Top 10 2020: Leading in Context Blog

By Linda Fisher Thornton Of the 52 individual posts published on the Leading in Context Blog in 2020, these 10 were the most popular. See if you notice a theme that connects these new topics that readers accessed most frequently.

Pandemic Leadership: 3 Questions To Ask in the New Year

By Linda Fisher Thornton Each year I raise questions that help leaders stay current as ethical expectations change. Here are three new questions to ponder as we head into a New Year. They are important questions about our ethical intentions, action and impact that will help guide our choices in the coming year.

Ethics is Acting Beyond Self-Interest

By Linda Fisher Thornton Ethics is fundamentally about acting beyond our own self-interests. Can we be ethical without considering others and acting in ways that benefit them?

Beliefs Are Complicated

By Linda Fisher Thornton Part 1 in the Truth and Misinformation: How to Spot False Narratives series explored truth and narrative, and Part 2 examined how data and motives relate to the truth. Part 3 addressed the importance of media literacy. In Part 4, we take a deeper look at truth and belief.

Leadership: Evaluating Ethical Awareness

By Linda Fisher Thornton Ethical awareness may have been considered private in the past, but it has become easier to observe in a society that is always socially connected. Since ethical reputation is a defining element in individual and organizational success, it is time that we consider ethical awareness as a key element of experience when selecting leaders for our businesses, community organizations, governments, and nations.

Who’s Accountable For Ethical Artificial Intelligence?

By Linda Fisher Thornton Who is accountable for ethical artificial intelligence? How do you build accountability into your organization's use of AI? I was recently invited to answer those questions in a guest blog post published on the EDUCAUSE Professional Development Commons and EDUCAUSE Review. There is much more to think about when implementing AI than just efficiency and time savings. There are ethical implications at every step of the process. This article includes an overview of those ethical implications and steps organizations can take to build ethics into current and future AI projects.

How to Be Human (Together)

By Linda Fisher Thornton This week I'm sharing an edited compilation of three previously published posts that are relevant for leaders and organizations wanting to honor human rights in chaotic times. The first addresses the risk of excluding any humans from our organizational statement of inclusion. The second explains why values transcend borders and boundaries, and the third explains that how we perceive people who are 'different' impacts our behavior and our ethics.

“Ethical Thinking Isn’t Automatic”

"For ethical leadership to stick, the culture needs an infrastructure that consistently supports acting on stated values...Ethical cultures treat ethical thinking as something that must be cultivated, demonstrated, and practiced over time."