PARENTS CORNER • Last updated September 29, 2017
There is no such thing as business ethics- there’s only ethics. If you desire to be ethical, you live it by one standard across the board.”
John C Maxwell
“Ethics is about how we meet the challenge of doing the right think when that will cost more than we want to pay”
Michael Josephson- The Josephson Institute of Ethics
“Men are alike in their promises. It is only in their deeds that they differ.”
“Living an ethical life may not always be easy, but it need not be complicated.”
John C Maxwell
“Ethics has a price and sometimes people must choose between what they want and what they want to be.”
“Integrity can be described as making your beliefs and your actions line up.”
John C Maxwell
These quotes led off a workshop I recently attended. While I believe I live ethically, I was open to new ideas and learning more. I was both impressed and challenged by the presenter, Anita Bock (firstname.lastname@example.org, 415-461-4298, Anita Bock consulting). The following are some of the thought provoking concepts and ideas presented that I believe are worthy of further reflection, by us all.
The morning began with a ‘review’ of alternative resolution techniques and ideas. Primary in this methodology is to change the way we view conflict. Conflict is an opportunity to open dialog, work with others through empathy rather than something to avoid. It accepts people as they are and where they are. It allows for each party to state their needs and self interests and to look for ways to problem solve the dispute fairly.
Each conflict has an ‘issue’ which comprises about 10% of the situation. The other 90% is made up of personalities, emotions, personal interests, self perception, needs, desires, and unresolved issues from the past. It is therefore imperative to fully resolve each dispute and then forgive! Key paths towards resolution are to listen to the needs and emotions at the heart of the conflict. Display respect for all parties, and request clarity to ambiguity. Use empathy and honesty to acknowledge the emotions intertwined in the conflict. Address solutions to the problem creatively, dialoging over the interests, and accepting paradoxes. Establish a means on how to disagree, following the golden rule of confidentiality and do no harm.
Anita then lead into discussing the newly adopted Code of Ethics (included in its entirety). She expressed the fact that we each choose each day, at each situation how ethical to behave. It is our choice and our responsibility. She presented the concept of ‘dialing up’ our ethics each morning. Similar to the radio dial, if we want more ethics we can choose to turn up the dial. This was an easy, visual concept, I believe many of us will have for many years to come.
She further discussed the concept of ‘situational ethics”. These are common rationalizations that lead to a ‘double standard’; including self interest, self protection, self deception and self righteousness. Some examples include:
Five Primary Threats to Ethical Conduct:
The Josephson Institute of Ethics identifies five steps to making an ethical decision
TRI-COUNTIES REGIONAL CENTER CODE OF ETHICS
Tri-Counties Regional Center pledges to set the standard for professional conduct by acting ethically and with integrity in all matters. We know that acting ethically builds credibility, both within our organization and throughout the community within which we operate. The Board of Directors and all employees are committed to making TCRC an organization that delivers the highest possible value for the people we serve and our community. We will accomplish this with integrity by:
TCRC aims to be a leader in setting the standard for ethical conduct by fully subscribing to the established codes of ethics for the relevant professions in our field, and by adhering to and applying the following core ethical values:
Further, we will:
2. Uphold the Law
By conducting our business dealings in accordance with all applicable laws and regulations, recognizing that compliance with the law does not comprise our entire ethical responsibility, rather, it is a minimum, absolutely essential condition for the performance of our duties.
3. Promote a Positive Work Environment
By doing our best, with the help of all our staff, to create a workplace where employees feel respected, satisfied and appreciated. Harassment or discrimination of any kind and especially involving race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, size, age, national origin, disability, political affiliation, and veteran or marital status is unacceptable in our workplace environment. Providing an environment that supports the values articulated above makes the achievement of excellence possible. While everyone who works for TCRC will contribute to the creation and maintenance of such an environment, our executives, managers and our Board assume responsibility for fostering a context for work that will bring out the best in all of us.
4. Promote a Safe Work Environment
By being committed to providing a drug-free, safe and healthy working environment. Each of us is responsible for compliance with environmental, health and safety laws and regulations and for reporting violations of such laws and regulations.
5. Avoid Conflicts of Interest
By avoiding in practice or appearance favoritism, influence, or activity that might impair or appear to impair our ability to make fair and objective decisions and judgments while performing our work. By disclosing personal or professional relationships that may present a conflict of interest.
6. Maintain Confidentiality
By maintaining accurate and complete records, by making entries into case and other records that reflect the desires and preferences of the people we serve or are in partnership with. By avoiding in practice or appearance any misrepresentation of facts or any falsification of records, and by understanding that to compromise confidentiality is illegal, that to misrepresent, withhold or falsify information is unethical and may be illegal, and that to hide behind confidentiality to avoid accountability is also unethical.
7. Address Conduct
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