Rethinking “Smart” Leadership in an Ethical Context

By Linda Fisher Thornton This week I'm looking at what it means to be a "smart" leader through the 7 Lenses (introduced in the book 7 Lenses) to get the full ethical context. Take note: You can do this with any idea, concept or project to better understand the ethical nuances.

The “Less Than” Fallacy

By Linda Fisher Thornton Anytime we think about another person or group as "less than," or treat another person or group as "less than," we are unethical. It's very simple, really. We are all human, and as humans, we all have rights and dignity. We all have a right to be here and to be treated with respect and fairness.

The Rise of Pay to Play

By Linda Fisher Thornton It is sometimes difficult to sort out "pay to play" awards (you pay someone to say good things about you and give you an icon to put on your website) from legitimate awards (the judging process is objective -- if you win you have actually earned it). "Pay to Play" is On the Rise

What is the Current State of Business Ethics?

By Linda Fisher Thornton I met with faculty members and students at Plymouth State University on October 3rd on the topic of "Decoding the Complexity of Doing the Right Thing." They had lots of questions, including the one answered in this video, "What it the Current State of Business Ethics?" This is a question that is 'top of mind' for many people as this year draws to a close.

Is Our Ethics Who We Are Or What We Do?

By Linda Fisher Thornton This week's question is about what defines our ethics - "Is our ethics based on who we are or what we do?" Some people would argue that we have a persona, a manner, either ethical or not. Others would say that it is our decisions and actions that define how ethical we are, and therefore our ethicality changes from moment to moment.

Leaders: Can Rights and Responsibilities Be Separated?

By Linda Fisher Thornton This week I take a moment to reflect on the question "Can rights and responsibilities be separated?" If we fail to live up to our responsibilities, we have a negative impact on others. If we assert individual rights without also taking responsibility, we are asking for more than we are willing to give.

Ready To Change the Ethics Quo (For Good)? – Part 1

By Linda Fisher Thornton Each day brings new challenges for leaders. They struggle to deal with uncertainty and complexity and sometimes the most ethical choices are not obvious. In this kind of environment, we can't assume that things are going well even when there are no lawsuits or imminent ethical crises. What we need to do is build an ethical workplace that will discourage ethical problems. This week the focus is on Ways to Improve Accountability For Ethics. Here are 3 ways to avoid relying on the status quo - that also help you "do good" in your organization, community and world.

Building Trust: Paradoxical Qualities to Cultivate

By Linda Fisher Thornton As we progress on the learning journey toward positive leadership, some of the qualities we seek seem to be paradoxical. For example, as leaders we need to be CRYSTAL CLEAR in outwardly communicating what we expect and also OPEN to hearing input from others that might change our plans. We need to be FULLY PRESENT in this moment, and still able to THINK AHEAD to prepare for the future.

5 Signs Your Culture is FAILING

By Linda Fisher Thornton Building a positive ethical culture is a long-term process. It involves much more than just company trappings and perks - leaders must make a commitment to people and to creating a positive work space. When things seem to be going well, it's easy to miss signs that the culture may be off track.